Cannon Street station rail crash

Cannon Street Station Rail Crash

UK Rail Accident
UK Rail Accident Less

Cannon Street station rail crash

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The Cannon Street station rail crash was an accident on the British railway system which occurred on 8 January 1991 at Cannon Street station. The accident killed two people and injured 524 others. The 07:58 commuter train composed of elderly Class 415 and Class 416 units from Sevenoaks failed to stop at a dead end on Platform 3 and collided with a buffer stop at around 10 mph .


A report was compiled of the accident by Her Majesty's Railway Inspectorate. No fault in the train's braking system could be found and the driver, Maurice Graham, was held to blame. He was not tested for drugs until three days after the accident, whereupon traces of cannabis were found in his system. The public inquiry found that there was insufficient evidence to suggest this had caused the accident.

The inquiry found that the cause of the accident was solely that of driver error. The report also made the following observations:
  • The age of the elderly trains increased the effect of the impact. Of the two coaches that suffered the worst damage, one was built on an underbody dating from 1934, having been refitted with a new body in 1953 and involved in a previous collision with a locomotive in 1958; the other was built on an underframe from 1928.
  • The interior design of the coaches' fittings and the large number of slam doors could have......
  • ...

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