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The Earthworks Management task force will investigate NR’s management of earthworks and drainage, particularly high-risk assets such as cuttings and embankments, and will be led by Lord Robert Mair, a geotechnical engineer and member of the House of Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology. It will investigate:
The Weather Action task force will review NR’s ability to manage and understand the effects of heavy rainfall on the railway and will be led by Dame Julia Slingo, a meteorologist and former chief scientist at the UK Met Office. It will investigate:
Investment by NR in its earthworks and drainage portfolio has risen in recent years from £550m in Control Period 4 (CP4) between 2009 and 2014, and £952m in CP5 from 2014 to 2019. A budget of £1.3bn is planned for CP6 between 2019 and 2024. However, NR says that despite this, its current safety management system can still be improved to mitigate further risks.
“The Stonehaven tragedy resulted in three people losing their lives – this is a stark reminder that we must never take running a safe railway for granted,” says Mr Andrew Haines, chief executive at NR. “With more and more extreme weather and tens of thousands of earthwork assets across Britain, our challenge is massive. While we are making record investments in these areas, we have asked world renowned experts, Dame Julia Slingo and Lord Mair, to help us address these issues as effectively as possible.”
NR has also announced an inspection of high-risk embankments across Britain, following a government request to review its resilience to and management of extreme weather.
The post Network Rail launches task forces following Stonehaven derailment appeared first on International Railway Journal.
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