FOI request detail

Summary of falls between train and platform since records began

Request ID: FOI-1265-2122
Date published: 05 October 2021

You asked

Hello, While looking for this data, I found a reply to an FOI request ( detailing the above information. I was wondering whether any data existed for this in the years preceding 2003, and also whether this data was available for the years following 2016, when this was published. Thank you very much.

We answered

Our ref: FOI-1265-2122/GH
Thank you for your request received by Transport for London (TfL) on 15 September 2021 asking for information about falls between train and platforms.
Your request has been considered under the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and our information access policy. I can confirm that we do hold the information you require.

The safety of our staff and customers is our top priority and the Tube is recognised as one of the safest metros around the world. We are never complacent, however, and continuously strive to reduce injuries.

We have done a lot to understand the key locations, issues and contributory factors which lead to customer accidents. To reduce numbers of incidents we are focussed on both influencing customer behaviour and changing our infrastructure to remove/reduce risk including the following measures:
  • Blue light system – this flashes within the gap as a train approaches giving the customers more awareness
  • School Liaison – we have briefed and conducted talks in schools to educate children on the danger of the gap between the train and platform
  • Staff positioning – we have staff based at the key locations on platforms to warn our customers of the dangers at specific locations
  • Scanning techniques – we are refreshing all of our train operators on how to scan their CCTV screens more effectively.
  • Poster campaign – on all stations of note there is signage advising them to “Mind the gap”
  • Announcements – these are at all locations with noticeable gaps
  • Staff training – all staff are trained on the safety mitigation for the platform-train interface

We continually monitor the effectiveness of our measures and campaigns in reducing accidents and adjust our approach accordingly.

The table below shows the number of incidents where a customer fell between the train and platform from 2016. This information has been obtained from TfL’s safety incident reporting system.
Please note that this system has only been in use since November 2016, so the figures cited for that year cover only the final two months, i.e. November and December. (The figures for 2021 are also incomplete, and are the most recently available).
Calendar Year Fatal Major Minor No injury reported Total
(from November)
    8 3 11
2017   1 126 22 149
2018   2 147 66 215
2019   1 162 90 253
2020 1 1 56 18 76
(up to data being extracted on 23/09/2021)
  1 17   18
Prior to 2003, the way in which we recorded information about incidents was different. Incidents where a customer fell between the train and platform were recorded under the wider category of all passenger incidents. Therefore, in order to identify any incidents relevant to your request, we would manually need to review and categorise each individual record. This work would exceed the ‘appropriate limit’ of £450 set by the Freedom of Information (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004.
Under section 12 of the FOI Act, we are not obliged to comply with requests if we estimate that the cost of determining whether we hold the information, locating and retrieving it and extracting it from other information would exceed the appropriate limit. In this instance, we estimate that the time required to answer this part of your request would exceed 18 hours which, at £25 per hour (the rate stipulated by the Regulations), exceeds the ‘appropriate limit’.
If you are not satisfied with this response please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.
Yours sincerely
Graham Hurt
FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

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