Page last updated at 10:17 GMT, Sunday, 14 May 2006 11:17 UK

Train deaths report is 'flawed'

Charlotte Thompson and Olivia Bazlinton
It is believed the teenagers were on their way to catch a train

The father of one of two girls killed at a level crossing has criticised a report into the accident last December.

Olivia Bazlinton, 14, and Charlotte Thompson, 13, died when they were hit by a train at Elsenham station, Essex.

Olivia's father, Chris Bazlington, 57, said the Rail Safety and Standards Board report contained inaccuracies and was "disappointing".

The report has ordered a safety review but has not provided any firm plans for preventing further deaths, he said.

Crossing misuse

"I feel that the report is very disappointing," he said.

"It raises a lot of serious issues and there are a number of discrepancies."

The fact is that if the gate had been locked the girls would not have been able to walk out on to the line
Chris Bazlington

"Nothing will bring Olivia back. We just want to make sure that something like this never happens again."

The report, published on Friday, said the girls had ignored warning signals and were struck by the Birmingham New Street to Stansted Airport train on 3 December.

They had opened a pedestrian gate to try and reach the train to Cambridge on the other side of the platform when they were struck by the oncoming service.

Mr Bazlinton said he wanted to see locks fitted to the pedestrian gates at the station.

"The fact is that if the gate had been locked the girls would not have been able to walk out on to the line," he said.

"But the report says that the gates cannot be locked because somebody might get caught between the lines. I think this is nonsense."

Mr Bazlinton also suggested that the level of misuse of the crossing was much higher than the report claims, with people regularly dashing to catch trains while the warning signals are on.


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