Serqueux english summary

Before twilight at 07:35 on 20 October 2015, regional express train No. 848973 between Abancourt (60) and Rouen (76) collided at full speed with two cows that had escaped from their enclosure after the station at Formerie.
After the impact, the driver realised that he was unable to stop his train, which went out of control at about 100 km/h going towards Serqueux.
He notified the operational traffic management centre (COGC) at Rouen, which took the steps planned for such cases.
After attempting unsuccessfully to stop the train by activating the alarm signal, the agent of the commercial trains department (ASCT) moved the passengers to the rear of the train.
After travelling almost 20 km and going through the station at Serqueux at 80 km/h, the train slowed down to walking speed in the ramp going towards Sommery.
The driver then took two stop blocks, alighted from the train on foot and, once it had stopped, immobilised it at 07:49.
The event caused no human casualties.
Material damage was limited to the front face and underside of the train.

The reason for the loss of control of the train was the loss of all its pneumatic and electromagnetic braking capacity after the impact.
The following technical causes led to the brake failure :

  • sensitivity and insufficient protection of the bleeding system ;
  • position of the cow catcher ;
  • vulnerability of some safety functions in the event of short-circuit in the hitch coupler.

BEA-TT made one recommendation on the implementation of THE technical modifications announced by SNCF Mobility.

The analysis also highlighted underlying causes by using feedback from the standards for rolling stock dimensions and risk forecast analyses.
BEA-TT made one recommendation and issued four calls for action on these topics.

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