London Fire Brigade

Croydon Tram crash one year on

09 November 2017

Firefighters will attend a memorial service alongside emergency service colleagues, victims’ families and local politicians in New Addington to mark the first anniversary of the Croydon tram crash.

Worst incident on UK rail and tram networks since 2004

The horrific derailment on Wednesday, 9 November last year was the worst accident on the rail and tram networks in the UK since 2004. Brigade Control were called at 0611 to reports of an incident near the Sandilands tram stop on Addiscome Road in Croydon. The first crews arrived on the scene quickly and on arrival discovered  the true extent of the tram derailment. It became immediately clear that a number of people had died, and that many were injured. The situation was very quickly declared a major incident by both British Transport Police and London Fire Brigade.

Assistant Commissioner Andy Roe who was Incident Commander on the day looks back at the tragedy where seven people sadly lost their lives:

“It was a very significant incident which really impacted the local community on a cold and wet November morning.

“It was the first major tram crash with loss of life since the 1800s and those commuters would have never imagined what they were going to face on their way to work. Our thoughts remain with those who were injured in the crash and those who lost loved ones.

"one of the most challenging incidents"

“I also want to thank the crews who worked alongside me that morning. As a firefighter you never know what you’re going to attend and this was one of the most challenging incidents many of them they would have ever faced.

“Those first crews arrived and quickly got to work on a challenging rescue with a 60 tonne tram on its side in the rain pitch dark. Firefighters were outstanding and worked tirelessly to rescue as many people as quickly and as safely as possible. They showcased rescue skills which are among the best in the world. To carefully lift and rescue those saveable lives from the tram took real professional understanding  of how the tram was going to react and meant incredible teamwork achieve that within 90 minutes.

“The incident will have a lasting impact on the area, the victims and their families and the firefighters who attended. The 150 firefighter’s attending were contacted by Counselling and Welfare with some receiving more long term support, their welfare being incredibly important.

A challenging 12 months

“The last 12 months have been like nothing I’ve seen before in my fire service career. But I am confident we will continue to evolve and respond to London’s ever changing threats.”