north easterCould rail disaster happen 10 years on?

Hart planned to meet her for the first time on the night of February 28. At 6am that morning he was driving a Land Rover pulling a trailer when, for reasons that have never be conclusively explained, Hart swerved off the M62 motorway at Great Heck near Selby, North Yorkshire, just before a bridge over the East Coast Main Line.

After striking the Land Rover, the driver&8217;s carriage derailed but the train stayed upright. However it deflected it into the path of an oncoming Freightliner freight train travelling from Immingham to Ferrybridge which had begun its journey 20 minutes earlier than scheduled.

But whose ult was it – the Highways Agency, which is responsible for roads, or Railtrack (now Network Rail) – which owned and maintained bridges like the one at Great Heck?

At Great Heck, campaigners drew attention to what they described as the inadequate length of the crash barriers alongside the road. According to the Health and Safety Executive&8217;s final report, the Land Rover had left the road some 24 metres before the barrier started, and had easily north easterCould rail disaster happen 10 years on?broken through the wooden fence that lined the track.

Hart, then 37, was a self employed builder who worked hard travelling on average 40,000 miles a year in pursuit of business.

While he was using a mobile telephone to call the emergency services after exiting the vehicle, the Land Rover was hit by a southbound GNER InterCity 225 heading from Newcastle to London King&8217;s Cross.

The two trains collided approximately half a mile from the impact with the Land Rover. Both train drivers, two additional train crew on board the InterCity 225, and six passengers were killed.

As with his work he threw himself into his relationship with Ms Panter, then 40, from Scunthorpe, spending hours texting her and speaking to her on the phone.

Hart was found guilty on 10 counts of causing death by dangerous driving and the tragedy brought swift condemnation of safety measures around the country&8217;s rail tracks, particular bridges.

At Hart&8217;s trial it was claimed he fell asleep at the wheel of his vehicle, something Hart has always denied. Whatnorth eastern health board cannot be disputed was that it caused mayhem.

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The vehicle ran down an embankment and onto the southbound railway track. Hart was unable to reverse it off the track.

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SERIOUS safety concerns were raised following the Selby Rail crash. Now, 10 years on from the disaster, has enough been done to make sure it doesn&8217;t happen again? Mike Kelly reports.

north easterCould rail disaster happen 10 years on?,WHEN Gary Hart met Kristeen Panter on an internet dating site on April 20, 2001, it began an unlikely chain of events that would lead to tragedy.

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