Britain's HSE Steps in After Manchester Buses Kill Three Pedestrians

Two fatal incidents and another serious injury, all of them involving pedestrians hit by city buses while walking in marked pedestrian crosswalks, prompted Britain's Health and Safety Executive to serve an Improvement Notice last week on the Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive. "Each of the incidents has occurred in the past 10 months while pedestrians were using designated crossing points, and each is being investigated by HSE inspectors,” said David Sowerby, HSE’s head of operations for the North West. “Following these fatalities and the other incident in 2007, we have now taken a wider look at the issue of pedestrian safety and are working with GMPTE to do so."

The notice requires GMPTE to assess all 22 bus station premises and interchanges it operates and to assess the risks to the safety of employees and anyone else who may be affected by its activities when using designated pedestrian crossing points. The assessment must examine the design, location, and use of all crossing points.

The first two victims were Jack Steel, 92, and Elsie Steel, 93, who were struck July 10, 2006. The third fatality occurred Jan. 23, 2007, and claimed the life of Ann Kerridge, 55. The third incident involved Ivy Kershaw, 77, who was struck at a bus station on Feb. 2, 2007, and remains hospitalized with a broken shoulder and serious head injuries, HSE said. “GMPTE is co-operating fully with the HSE during our investigations and is now undertaking the assessment and development of an action plan, as required by the Improvement Notice. This plan will contain a timetable for implementing the necessary measures identified in the assessment and it will be discussed with HSE," Sowerby said. “We both hope that the ultimate outcome will be premises that are safer to use both for GMPTE staff, as well as passengers and local pedestrians.”

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