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2020/06

Report on collision between train 1859 and 1860 at Berekvam station, Flåm Line on 31 July 2019

On Wednesday 31 July 2019, passenger trains 1860 and 1859 were to cross each other at Berekvam station on the Flåm Line. Train 1859 was heading down towards Flåm and should, pursuant to the ordinary procedure, be directed to track 1 at Berekvam. Train 1860 had already arrived and was stationary in track 2. By mistake point 1 was set to track 2, where train 1860 was already stationary, resulting in a collision between the two trains. Four passengers and one crew member sustained minor injuries in the accident.

The station has a sigle-entry signal and is staffed by a local traffic controller from Bane NOR SF. On the Flåm Line, the local traffic controller's responsibilities are to send and receive manual announcements, set signals and operate the points.

There are no technical barriers in the safety system of stations with sigle-entry signals and manual announcements capable of preventing such errors. The local traffic controller therefore fills an important barrier function in connection with trains crossing in stations with sigle-entry signals, but this system is vulnerable to human error. The risk of this happening can increase if it is a long time since a person has performed a task, which was the case in this instance.

The AIBN has pointed out several safety problems in the course of this investigation and therefore submits two safety recommendations addressed to Bane NOR SF. The first focuses on risk assessment of local practices at single-entry signal stations with the goal of reducing the possibility of human error. The second targets stations with a potential for similar accidents, where the possibilities should be explored for speed reduction that would give the train drivers more time to act if a risk of collision is detected.

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Photo: The police

Safety recommendation

Safety recommendation JB no 2020/07T

On Wednesday 31 July 2019, at approximately 14.00, train 1859 collided with train 1860, which was stationary in track 2 at Berekvam station. The station traffic control routines consist of a series of tasks that need to be done in the correct order, where human errors may lead to accidents.

The Accident Investigation Board Norway recommends that the Norwegian Railway Authority request Bane NOR SF to risk assess local practices at stations with single-entry signals with the goal of reducing the possibility of human error.

Safety recommendation JB no 2020/08T

On Wednesday 31 July 2019, at approximately 14.00 , train 1859 collided with train 1860, which was stationary in track 2 at Berekvam station. The station has a single-entry signal, and in this accident, a point was by mistake set to the wrong track. The speed limit at the station was 30 km/h, but it was not sufficiently low to avoid collision.

The Accident Investigation Board Norway recommends that the Norwegian Railway Authority request Bane NOR SF to consider speed reductions at stations with single-entry signal where similar accidents may happen.

Facts

Location Berekvam station
Occurrence date 31.07.2019
Train No 1859 and 1860
Type of Transportation Passenger train
Type of occurrence Collision
Rolling Stock Locomotive, Passenger Carriage
Operator Vy AS

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