New research reveals stations pose extremely low risk to passengers
New research published by RSSB has confirmed that there is no difference in the risk to the passenger between a guard-operated or driver only operated train. Moreover, train travel is by far the safest form or travel.

A forensic investigation into six years of recent safety data (2010-2015) looked at all the relevant recorded incidents at the platform edge on the national rail network. It concluded that the risk to passengers associated with train dispatch – the processes used by staff to ensure trains leave stations safely – to be extremely low.

According to RSSB, the high levels of safety evident implies individual rail companies are adept at managing the specific risks local to their operations and will continue to enjoy a good safety record so long as attention is focused on managing their risks appropriately – regardless of what operation techniques they use.

With over 1.73bn passenger journeys made, using over 2,500 stations in the 2016-17 financial year, the overall harm to passengers has actually fallen, with fewer major injuries due to slips, trips and falls being recorded.

And while 2016-17 saw 4 fatalities to passengers in accidents at the platform edge, this is roughly comparable to the risk of being killed from a lightning strike (about 2 or 3 a year in the UK), and compares to 500 deaths a year in the UK due to food poisoning, and about 1,800 deaths on the roads.

Past investigations also show that deaths at the platform edge are often linked with intoxication and individual passenger behaviour, and can occur in a range of circumstances, most often when no train is present at the time.

The latest figures also continue to confirm train travel as one of the safest forms of transport, the car being 21 times as risky, the bicycle nearly 400 times and motorcycle nearly 1,400 times.

White Hart Lane station to get a facelift
WHLTransport for London (TfL) has awarded a £17.8m contract to Taylor Woodrow, part of VINCI Construction UK, to design and rebuild White Hart Lane station.

The station, which handles 1.3m customers a year, is to be completely transformed with a new ticket hall located at the centre of the platforms on Love Lane, a new additional entrance on Penshurst Road and two new lifts to provide step-free access from the street to platform.

Direct access from the ticket hall to platforms will reduce bottlenecks and increase movement efficiency. A new forecourt will also be built on Love Lane.

The redevelopment is part of the regeneration of the area, which includes a new stadium for Tottenham Hotspur, a museum, hotel and 585 new homes. Some 5,000 more homes are also being built in the High Road West and wider north Tottenham areas.

Work starts in the autumn, and will be completed by spring 2019. The station will continue to operate throughout the majority of that time.

Coffee recycling scheme gains national recognition
The coffee recycling partnership between Network Rail and bio-bean, has received national recognition at the BusinessGreen Leaders Awards, earning a Highly-Commended award for the Circular Economy Project of the Year.

Network Rail’s coffee recycling scheme has been under trial at six stations in London since April 2015, and is now being extended to Reading and Bristol Temple Meads. The plan is to roll it out to all of Network Rail’s 17 managed stations across Britain by the end of the year.

Working in close collaboration with Network Rail and station retailers such as Pret a Manger, Caffe Nero, and Starbucks, bio-bean has been reprocessing the waste at its factory in Alconbury, Cambridgeshire, transforming it from coffee grounds into Coffee Logs, a fuel for the home. So far, the trial has converted 790 tonnes of coffee from 38 million cups into enough fuel to heat 11,000 average sized houses for a year. This has prevented an estimated 5,000 tonnes of CO2 from entering the atmosphere since April 2015.