Station safety

Don’t learn safety by accident

We manage Britain’s busiest and biggest stations. We work hard to keep passengers travelling through our stations safe – we want everyone home safe every day.

However, despite us doing everything we can to make stations a safe place, they are only as safe as the way they are used by people.  We see too many accidents happening at stations every year so we are asking people to be more aware of their surroundings and be more careful in stations.

Take care on the stairs

Most accidents leading to major injuries at stations are due to slips, trips and falls. And they’re likely to happen on stairs or escalators more than any other station location, often because people are rushing or carrying heavy luggage.

To avoid accidents on stairs and escalators:

  • Use lifts or step-free routes where available if you’re carrying luggage.
  • Don’t rush when moving up or down stairs or escalators.
  • Hold the handrail and concentrate on your footing.
  • Wear sensible footwear.
  • Walk, don’t run.
A cartoon poster with a character carrying a heavy suitcase on his back with things falling out of it. The writing on the poster says "Too much to carry? Here's the trick. Take the lift, it's safe and quick. Don't learn safety by accident"
Campaign poster for using the lift with heavy luggage
A cartoon poster of a character who has slipped over at the bottom of an escalator. The copy on the poster says "Hold on tight. Use the escalator right. Don't learn safety by accident"
Campaign poster to escalator safety

Walk with care

It’s not just stairs passengers need to be mindful of, whilst every effort is made to keep concourses, platforms and other floor surfaces safe, regular footfall and environmental factors can make surfaces slippery or present unplanned obstacles. So, to avoid accidents around the station:

  • Wear sensible footwear.
  • Walk, don’t run.
A cartoon poster with a character falling over. The writing on the poster says "Walk with care.Trips and spills might be there. Don't learn safety by accident"
Campaign poster for walking with care at stations

Mind the gap

Sadly, in 2019/20 there were 7 fatalities in stations, 6 involving falls from the platform to the track. We work with others in the industry on the Platform Train Interface (PTI) strategy, to make the gap between the platform and the train safer.

However, unfortunately we can’t reduce the gaps between trains and platforms. There are 2,500 stations in Britain built to varying specifications over the last 180 years, and there are many different designs of trains too. Take extra care and mind the gap.

There are also other risks to be aware of when on a station platform:

A graphic poster showing a character stepping off a train with writing "Watch your step when minding the gap" Don't learn safety by accident.
Campaign poster for minding the gap when stepping off trains

Be aware of the doors – When boarding or alighting the train, don’t stop doors from closing as they may not reopen automatically.

If you drop something on the track, leave it and contact a member of staff – Every year people are killed while trespassing on the railway. Never step onto the tracks. Lines may be electrified and trains can approach at speed. If you drop something, contact a member of staff.

To stay safe on platforms:

  • Stay behind the marked yellow/white platform edge lines whilst waiting on the platforms.
  • Make sure you apply the brakes to prams and strollers, and always position parallel to the tracks.

Had a few drinks?

It’s easy to momentarily forget the risks if you’re under the influence of drugs or alcohol. At certain times through the year we see an increase in accidents where alcohol was a contributing factor. People who have consumed alcohol are more likely to slip, trip or fall or make irrational decisions such as running across the track.

A cartoon poster of a character sat on the floor at a train station. The copy says "If you're drunk, beware. And take extra care. Don't learn safety by accident"
Campaign poster for being more careful when you’ve been drinking

We’re improving passenger flow

We’re working on a programme of upgrades that will make our stations safer and more appealing places to visit, including improvements in signage and access. We’re also working hard to apply the latest technology to how we communicate safety messaging in stations.

If you need help getting on and off trains, please book passenger assistance.

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