Partially sighted man falls onto track at New Street

A partially-sighted man fell on to the tracks while trying to board a train in Birmingham over the weekend.

The passenger, believed to be in his 40s, became trapped between the train and the platform at New Street station at about 09:15. Engineers isolated the charge of the electric train before six firefighters lifted the man away from the line.

He was taken to hospital as a precautionary measure. Network Rail said an investigation was under way. A spokesperson for West Midlands Fire Service said:

"His legs were under the train on the track and the top half of him was resting on the platform. The firefighters got down on to the track to lift him to safety.

"[The man] had walking difficulties, was partially sighted and had fallen between the platform and the train while he was trying to board."

Philip Connolly, policy manager from Disability Rights UK, said he was surprised to hear the accident had happened at New Street because it was usually well staffed by workers trained to help people with mobility and access issues. He said the incident 'may serve as a wake-up call for the rest of the rail network".

A Network Rail spokesman said it was rare for passengers to fall on to tracks, adding that "the sheer number of people using stations across the country means it does happen from time to time, for varying reasons".

He added the incident had caused delays to 13 trains with delays totalling 82 minutes.

The accident will be referred to the Rail Accident Investigation Branch as a matter of course.


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