CBRN Group Contact Details
Office: 01822 61 08 08
This is scheduled for 4th March 2014 to be held at Tactical Hazmat Ltd Training Centre Evesham.
Minutes of Meetings
Owing to the sensitive nature of the topics discussed, minutes are not generally made available to non-group members.
TERMS OF REFERENCE
EPS CBRN Group Terms of Reference
1 To represent the Emergency Planning Society (EPS) on CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear) emergencies. This includes CBRN emergencies resulting from deliberate, accidental and natural causes.
2 To report key activities of the Group to the main body of the EPS through the Director of Business Services.
Transport Resilience is a sub group within the City Resilience PWG.
The following page highlights all current activities and the success we have achieved to date.
KINGSCROSS BOXING DAY TRAIN DISASTER
On 27 December, many train passengers on the East Coast main line and the Great Western main line experienced significant delays and disruptions. While some passengers were delayed at mainline stations, others were diverted to smaller stations and experienced overcrowding and, in the case of Finsbury Park, some had to queue outside for at least two hours. The disruptions followed the overruns of two very significant pieces of engineering works, at Holloway, north of King’s Cross station, and at Old Oak Common, west of Paddington station. The nature of the issues meant that the train operating companies (TOCs) were given around 14 hours advance notice on Boxing Day of the overrun affecting King’s Cross station, but no warning at Paddington. These were two very different incidents, with different types of passenger impact.
There were mutual failings in the communications between Network Rail and Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), who manage Finsbury Park station, around the implementation of the contingency plan. Failure to operate a revised platform usage pattern, as agreed the previous evening, was a significant contributor to the subsequent overcrowding, and was only corrected after three long distance trains had cycled through the station.
Around 100 trains had already arrived, departed or passed through the station with little incident by 10:00 when the first long distance train arrived. By about 10:30 it became clear that passenger flows were extremely difficult, with crowded platforms meaning that passengers on incoming trains were even unable to alight. As a result, at approximately 11:00, GTR closed the station for about 30 minutes due to overcrowding and the safety risk to passengers (supported by the British Transport Police (BTP)). The overcrowding led to several hundred passengers having to queue outside the station, in some cases for 2-3 hours. GTR and BTP implemented a one way system at the station and, by 14:00, the crowd were organised and being managed. By 17:00 the queues had largely disappeared.
Although the vast majority of passengers were able to board a train to their destination, a reduced service meant that trains were cramped with many passengers forced to stand for some or their entire journey.
The timing of these events, over the Christmas holidays, has also made us question traditional thinking. While our industry has historically seen the ‘quieter times’ of railway use as the natural time to carry out essential project works, it is appropriate to challenge some of this thinking. Passengers who use the railway during holidays to connect with friends and family also deserve reliable and predictable services. That is the thought behind a second review that was announced, following discussions with the Secretary of State.