Mayor welcomes the launch of new TfL incident support line
The Mayor of London has today welcomed the creation of a new telephone helpline to support people who have been affected by fatal or serious injuries on London's transport network.
The helpline, staffed by a dedicated Transport for London (TfL) support team, is the brainchild of Sarah Hope. Sarah was severely injured nine years ago by a bus in South London. Sarah's mother Elizabeth was killed and the incident left Sarah and her daughter Pollyanna with life changing injuries.
Sarah and her husband Christopher have worked tirelessly ever since the collision to give victims of transport accidents a voice. Sarah and her twin sister Victoria founded a charity called Elizabeth's Legacy of Hope to fund prosthetic limbs for child amputees in developing countries.
The Sarah Hope Line will be based at TfL's customer service headquarters in Greenwich, and is the product of months of intensive work between Sarah, TfL and City Hall. It will provide a range of practical and emotional help to those affected, including helping with travel, accommodation and other needs following an incident, and referral to a number of specialised support services including counselling.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: "I am pleased to welcome the Sarah Hope Line, which will support people involved in serious incidents on the transport network. The Line is the result of Sarah and Christopher Hope's indefatigable work and the dedication from staff at TfL."
Sarah Hope said: `I am delighted that Boris Johnson and Transport for London have listened to me and established the Sarah Hope Line for victims of collisions on London's roads. TfL and Boris Johnson are putting their arms around victims of these tragic accidents on London's public transport system. The Line will be a 'voice of kindness' for the victims of collisions and ensure that even in their darkest hour there will someone from TfL to try to help them through it.
`I have never got on a bus since 25 April 2007 when I was hit by a London bus in Mortlake, causing me severe injuries, killing my mother Elizabeth and resulting my two year old daughter Pollyanna losing her leg.
`But now - with the establishment of this vital support line and with the launch of the new bus safety programme - I hope to feel more confident about getting on a bus again.'
The Sarah Hope Line is part of a world-leading programme launched by the Mayor and TfL to drive major improvements in safety across London's bus network.
The programme will bring together the newest technology, training, incentives, support, reporting and transparency right across the network, contributing to TfL's work to meet the Mayor's target of halving the number of people killed or seriously injured on the Capital's roads by 2020.
Leon Daniels, Managing Director of Surface Transport at TfL said: `When I first met Sarah Hope I knew that her terrible experience gave her a unique perspective on the needs of those injured on our network. Because whilst London's bus network is amongst the safest in the world we are determined to make it even safer. When a serious incident does occur we want to ensure that those involved have all the support that they need to help them at what is obviously a very difficult time. This service that we have established with Sarah Hope will ensure that people involved in life-changing incidents on our network will get the support they need.'
Sarah Hope will visit the staff of the Sarah Hope Line in April.
The contact details for The Sarah Hope Line are:
Phone: 0343 222 5678
For more information about the Sarah Hope Line, and to read Sarah Hope's story, go to https://www.tfl.gov.uk/campaign/incident-support-service.
For more details about the work of Elizabeth's Legacy of Hope, go to http://elizabethslegacyofhope.org/