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NETWORK RAIL REPORT WELCOMED, BUT PUBLIC INQUIRY NEEDED INTO GRAYRIGG ACCIDENT

September 4, 2007 3:00 PM

Local MP Tim Farron has reacted to the publication of Network Rail's internal report into the Grayrigg train accident with a renewed call for a public inquiry into the incidents at Grayrigg and at Potters Bar in Hertfordshire. The Network Rail report confirms that the accident was caused by the deterioration of the points at Grayrigg - a deterioration which had not been spotted because of a breakdown in the inspection regime together with issues with engineers getting access to the tracks to inspect them after Virgin's tilting trains were introduced to the West Coast Main Line.

Speaking this afternoon, Tim said: "I welcome Network Rail's response to this accident. It is good to see the company coming clean and apologising.

"However, this internal report does not answer all the questions. Given the similarities between the accidents at Grayrigg and Potters Bar, the Government should hold a public inquiry into track maintenance.

"That is the only way to make passengers feel safe and restore trust in the rail network."

Looking back to the events of the night of 23 February, Tim continued: "We mustn't't forget the fantastic help and support provided by local residents in Grayrigg, as well as the emergency services, on the night of the accident, and in the weeks afterwards. Their help and support just goes to prove the strength of community spirit which is found in this part of the country."