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Councillor William McCandless Recalls Train Crash At Downhill 16 Years Ago

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BT Coleraine

Speaking to Causeway Coast Community yesterday evening Councillor William McCandless said “A friend of mine reminded me of the train derailment sixteen years ago today at Downhill.

On 4th June 2002 boulders which had probably been loosened by heavy rain had slipped from the cliff face at Downhill and caused the Londonderry to Belfast train to be derailed.
Fortunately there were no fatalities.

In the report that followed some of the conclusions in connection with the crash were :-

The PSNI and NIR did not come to a clear understanding as to the seriousness or exact location of the incident.
Due to an unexplained technical fault PSNI systems failed to record the details and timings of the two emergency calls made by the eye witness.
The radio equipment in the train was in working order.

A similar incident occurred on the Glasgow to Oban train in June 2010.

Though train accidents are terrifying and do attract much public attention the truth still stands that travelling by train is still much safer than travelling by car.

Train travel is being revolutionised. In 2015 a Japanese train set a record of 373 mph.

The advances in passenger trains are seeing more than just fast speeds, we are moving towards the age of digital trains which will transform the rail network for passengers, business and freight operations by deploying modern signalling and train control technology to increase capacity, reduce delays, enhance safety and drive costs down

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