FOI request detail

Copies of Formal Investigation Reports sice 2019

Request ID: FOI-2311-2223
Date published: 27 February 2023

You asked

When there are serious safety incidents on the Tube/DLR/Trams, I understand you carry out investigations which result in reports known as Formal Investigation Reports (FIR). These take place irrespective of whether the Rail Accident Investigation Branch investigate. I recall that you used to publish FIRs on the TfL web site but this seems to have stopped. Please will you make available reports published from 1/1/2019 that involve a train or tram please?

We answered

Our Ref:         FOI-2311-2223

Thank you for your request received on 13 December 2022 asking for information about Formal Investigation Reports (FIRs). I apologise for the delay in my response.

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our information access policy. I can confirm we do hold the information you require.

Please find attached the FIRs for the incidents on our train and tram services since 1 January 2019.

In accordance with the FOI Act, we are not obliged to supply some of the information contained within the reports as it is subject to statutory exemptions to the right of access to information, under Section 38(1)(b) of the Act.

In this instance the exemption has been applied to details regarding the operation of our train stock and trams. This information could adversely affect the safety and security of TfL employees and members of the general public. Disclosure of information could compromise security and would place members of the public and TfL staff at risk by highlighting areas on our stock that could be susceptible to being targeted.

Whilst we make no suggestion that you would use this information for anything other than you own personal interest, disclosure of this information to you has to be regarded as a disclosure to ‘the public at large’. This information could potentially be obtained and utilised by individuals who may wish to use this information to cause disruption or harm to the London transport network. The network is an attractive terrorist target for several reasons including, its importance to London and the knock on effect to the nation’s economy if it is disrupted, the publicity gained from attacking an iconic transport system and the attractiveness of the system for a mass casualty attack due to its open, mass transport nature. It is also part of the nation’s critical infrastructure by virtue of its central importance to the functioning of London and its economy.

The use of this exemption is subject to an assessment of the public interest in relation to the disclosure of the information concerned. We recognise the need for openness and transparency by public authorities, but in this instance the public interest in applying the exemption, in order to minimise risks to operational resilience, safe operation of the transport network, the welfare of staff and members of the general public, outweighs the public interest in disclosure.

In accordance with our obligations under Data Protection legislation some personal data has been removed, as required by section 40(2) of the FOI Act. This is because disclosure of this personal data would be a breach of the legislation, specifically the first principle of Article 5 of the UK General Data Protection Regulation which requires all processing of personal data to be fair and lawful. It would not be fair to disclose this personal information when the individuals have no expectation it would be disclosed and TfL has not satisfied one of the conditions which would make the processing ‘fair’.

This exemption to the right of access to information is an absolute exemption and not subject to an assessment of whether the public interest favours use of the exemption.

If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable to access it for some reason, please feel free to contact me.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.

Yours sincerely

Gemma Jacob
Senior FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

[email protected]


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