Seven people dead after Croydon tram derailment

Emergency services on the scene in Croydon following a tram derailment. Photo: Hannah Collier (@hannahCollier1)

Seven people have died and dozens of people have been injured after a tram overturned in Croydon, south London, this morning.

British Transport Police said they were called at 6.13am following a derailment near the Sandilands tram stop on 9 November 2016.

Several people were freed by the emergency services and others were trapped in the upturned tram. The cause of the crash is still unclear and investigators from the Rail Accident Investigation Branch are on site. Residents living near the scene described hearing “a big crash”.

Peter McKenna, deputy director of operations at the London Ambulance Service said that 22 ambulance crews, 12 officers, and two advanced paramedic practitioners were sent to the scene, alongside the hazardous area response team. Two trauma teams from London’s Air Ambulance and a command support vehicle were also dispatched.

“We have treated a number of patients at the scene and took 51 patients to hospital. 20 were taken to St George’s University Hospital and 31 to Croydon University Hospital,” McKenna said. Four of those brought to St George's Hospital in Tooting are thought to be seriously injured.

Near to the crash site there are four tram lines that converge further up the track and speculation has centred on whether a points problem was to blame for the accident. Following the incident there are no trams coming or going from East Croydon station.

London mayor Sadiq Khan commented: “I am in contact with emergency services and Transport for London, who are working extremely hard to get the situation under control and treat those who have been injured. My thoughts are with all those involved in this incident.”

The 39-stop service is London's only tram network and operates from Wimbledon to Beckenham Junction, Elmers End and New Addington, via Croydon. It began operation in May 2000 as Croydon Tramlink, becoming the first tram system in London since 1952. More than 27 million passengers used the service in 2015/16.

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