Railtrack vows to help crash victims
Rail investors at annual meeting urge haste in compensation cases
Friday 25 July 1997
Sir Bob Horton, the Railtrack chairman, pledged to take action after the Transport Minister Glenda Jackson wrote to him drawing attention to delays in dealing with claims from a number of residents affected by a train collision in Stafford 16 months ago. Railtrack was also criticised for delays in compensating victims of two other crashes at Bexley, Kent, earlier this year, and at Watford Junction last August.
Sir Bob told shareholders at the annual meeting at the Barbican in London that he would be bringing together all interested parties to try to speed up the processing of claims.
"We will deal with its speedily and get the parties together. It does the reputation of the rail industry no good if these things are allowed to drag on."
Keith Bill, national secretary of the campaign group Save Our Railways, told the Board of Directors that victims of the three crashes were still waiting for compensation, adding: "Every conceivable obstacle has been put in the way of achieving the truth about these crashes."
Outside the meeting Jimmy Knapp, General Secretary of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union, said fragmentation of the railways had given individual companies the opportunities of avoiding their responsibilities to accident victims.
"You cannot have private companies boasting about their profits while innocent victims of crashes are left destitute," he said.
Railtrack came under fire at the meeting for delays to paying compensation to people at Stafford. Stafford's Labour MP David Kidney said residents living alongside the line where two trains collided had modest claims for compensation, but no one had accepted liability.
Although the meeting was dominated by questions about compensation, the anorak brigade still found time to indulge their obsession, tackling the Railtrack chairman on a range of arcane subjects ranging from infill elctrification schemes to ultrasonic testing of rail tracks.
Sir Bob, perched above the rest of the Railtack board on a high chair looking for all the world like the fat controller, took most of them in his stride.
- 1 Chelsea victory parade mocked on Twitter as 'tens of fans' pack the streets of London
- 2 Preston fan who appeared to snatch Jermaine Beckford's shirt from eight-year-old boy identified and says: 'the truth will come out'
- 3 Johnny Depp facing 10 years in jail for illegally bringing dogs to Australia
- 4 US warned by Chinese media to stop meddling or 'war will be inevitable'
- 5 Isis burns woman alive for refusing to engage in 'extreme' sex act, UN says
Cyclist who knocked down three-year-old girl says his life has been 'destroyed'
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
Johnny Depp facing 10 years in jail for illegally bringing dogs to Australia
US warned by Chinese media to stop meddling or 'war will be inevitable'
Isis burns woman alive for refusing to engage in 'extreme' sex act, UN says
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Did you know? SThree is a mul...
£55 - 65k (DOE): Guru Careers: A unique opportunity for a permanent C# Develop...
£16 - 20k: Guru Careers: A Graduate Editor / Editorial Assistant is needed to ...
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...