What do we know about rail suicide incidents?: analysis of 257 fatalities on the rail network in Great Britain

Ryan, Brendan (2017) What do we know about rail suicide incidents?: analysis of 257 fatalities on the rail network in Great Britain. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit . ISSN 2041-3017

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Abstract

There are over two hundred and fifty suicides on the railway in Great Britain (GB) each year. Descriptive statistics are compiled, producing national and international data. The industry know how many and, to a limited extent, where these fatalities occur. There is little in-depth analysis of events. Therefore, there are gaps in knowledge of these fatalities and this is a weakness when considering the best approaches to prevention. This paper reports on the analysis of data on 257 suicide events at or near to 51 stations on three rail routes in Great Britain over a 20 year period. The analysis uses data from the industry Safety Management System (SMIS) database and produces simple descriptive statistics on a range of variables, including comparisons across the three rail routes. Additional data from staff and route based documentation have been used to verify, supplement and interpret information in the database. Examples of patterns of immediate and precursor behaviours during incidents have been presented, illustrating the potential to explore both common and anomalous behaviours during events. The findings demonstrate the type of content that can be explored within the industry data and through use of other data that are available within the industry. Commentary is provided on the strengths and weaknesses of the data and how findings from the analysis can be used to improve future data collection and prevention of incidents.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Proc IMechE Part F: J Rail and Rapid Transit © IMechE 2017
Keywords: Rail suicide, Rail Safety, Risk factors, Accident Analysis, Security, Stations, Incident data
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Engineering > Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering
Identification Number: 10.1177/0954409717701775
Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2017 14:17
Last Modified: 07 May 2017 18:20
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/41100

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