A Doncaster rail worker killed by a train was standing in the wrong place to do his job of supervising a work gang’s safety, an inquiry has found.
Scott Dobson had previously been involved in two near-misses on other rail routes and was under investigation but had not been suspended from his role as a controller of site safety.
If he had been temporarily demoted he might still be alive but the enquiries carried out by the Rail Accident Investigation Branch show his immediate boss was also a friend of Scott’s.
The 26-year-old, who lived in Stainforth, was killed by a Scunthorpe to Lincoln train near Saxilby on the afternoon of December 4 last year.
He was acting as controller of site safety for the seven-man gang who were replacing track ballast near Sykes Lane, Saxilby, about eight miles south of Gainsborough.
The RAIB report published yesterday says Scott had not implemented a safe system of work but none of the other workers challenged him.
He should have been standing between the rails where the men were working, looking along the other track for trains, but instead stood in the 6ft gap between the up and down line watching his team.
It is believed he became distracted by the work operation and the noise of pneumatic hammers may have obscured the sound of the approaching train which hit him side-on.
Scott, employed by subcontractors SkyBlue, was under investigation for similar incidents in October and November but his manager was a friend and the suspension of his safety certification ‘would affect their social relationship’, the RAIB report states.