Woman dragged by neck along Tube platform for 10 metres after scarf gets stuck in doors

Potentially fatal incident saw woman trapped as Tube drove off

Click to follow
The Independent Online

A woman narrowly escaped serious injury after being dragged along an Underground platform when her scarf was caught in the doors of a Tube train.

A report from the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) detailed the terrifying moment a passenger was dragged 10 metres down a platform by a departing Tube.

The commuter had been attempting to board a train on the Piccadilly Line when the woollen knitted scarf around her neck became trapped in the doors and the Tube began to drive off.

The train driver was unaware it was trapped and the woman was unable to pull the scarf free as the train at Holborn Station began to move, the report from the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) said.

She was only saved from being seriously hurt when a staff member tried to help by catching hold of her and she fell to the ground.

The scarf was torn from her neck as she fell and was carried into the tunnel by the train.

The RAIB report said: "The passenger suffered injuries to her neck and back, but the actions of the member of staff may have saved her from being more badly hurt."

It added that the role of the station assistant who came to the passenger's aid involved the safe despatch of trains but that the equipment and procedures associated with the role do not enable such assistants to intervene effectively in an emergency.

The RAIB said the driver had been unable to see what was happening on the platform after the train had begun to move.

The report said the last fatal incident of the same nature in the Underground occurred in 1997, when a seven-year-old boy caught his anorak in a closing Tube train door and was dragged along the platform and under the train. However, the report into this year's incident said: "There do not appear to be any factors associated with the location that could create any link between the 1997 and 2014 accidents."

On the February 2104 Tube incident, Nigel Holness, operations director for the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly lines, said: "The safety of customers and staff is our top priority and we do all we can to ensure customers can travel safely at all times.

"The quick thinking of our staff during this incident prevented further injury to the customer, and all of our safety procedures and warnings were carried out as normal before the train moved away from the platform.”

Additional reporting by PA