Since 1993, the London Underground has increased its amount daily of users tremendously. Today, a majority of Londoners use the tube multiple times daily, making accidents even more common that one might think.

As we all know, those silly “mind the gap” signs and voice reminders are everywhere along the tube stations…which sparks my interest in wondering just how many people do not “mind the gap”? I know I have come close to falling between the train and the platform a few times, for the fact I am a bit clumsy compared to the normal person…but I am sure some have actually fallen into the gap. Sadly, people are usually to mortified to report an incident such as that, so all the statistics I see are of suicides. FUN!

According to The Economist, for every 300 mile journey there is one casualty. Now, I know that is a little intense, however it is interesting to see the statistics. An article in British Medical Journal (written by Coats, T. J. and Walter, D. P.) was about suicides by tube. To sum it up they said most fatalities on the Underground are suicides. To prevent that, most platforms at deep tube stations have pits beneath the track, originally constructed to aid drainage of water from the platforms but they also help prevent death or serious injury when a passenger falls or jumps in front of a train. Good thinking London, trying to help depressed people live!

Another funny thing about the tube is the “stand clear closing door” reminders. I mean honestly, if the doors are closing don’t try to be Indiana Jones and slip in at the last second…that is how you get stuck and people laugh at you. Believe it or not, there have been incidents where people have died because they got stuck in the door then thrown from the train. How terrible right? I mean, if you look, there are even some tubes that have signs that tell you to not board while the doors are closing. One tube sign even said there was something like 172 incidents last year of people getting stuck in the doors, and 1 of them resulted in death. Can you imagine? So, I hope those people learned their lessons…I know if I got stuck in a tube door , along with being completely embarrassed and losing all sense of pride I once had, I would not try that again!

According to Kletz (1990) 50-90% of all accidents are due to human failing.

So what have I learned today? Mind the gap…seriously. I do not want to make more of a skeptical of myself than I already do. Also, don’t try to be a B.A. and make it through the doors before they close, unless of course you are Kristen. Since I saw her take charge and make those doors reopen. Super woman? I think yes! Lastly, if I am ever depressed…do not go near a tube station.

I am sure this makes everyone want to ride the tube. I know I do 😉

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1 Comment

  1. Stephanie

     /  October 8, 2011

    this is great honey!!!! Love how you have the facts and add your own sense of humor to it – very enjoyable and informative to read!! Mind the gap though! 😉


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