Suicide or trespass incident?

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by GingerRH, 11 Jun 2015.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. GingerRH

    GingerRH Member

    Messages:
    72
    Joined:
    21 Apr 2015
    My question - when does a trespass incident become an attempted suicide.

    This morning between Sunningdsle and Ascot a lady is said to have jumped from a bridge onto the tracks and been injured, subsequently causing delays and the power to be switched off whilst emergency services dealt with it.

    Living opposite the bridge, I can almost certainly say it was suicide attempt as there are a thousand easier ways of getting down onto the track.

    Is there specific guidelines between classing as trespass and suicide etc?

    Or is it only classed as 'hit by a train' if it's fatal?
     
  2. A-driver

    A-driver Established Member

    Messages:
    4,483
    Joined:
    9 May 2011
    Hit by train dosnt have to be fatal but has to include being hit by a train.

    Trespassing is being on the line without authority.

    Killed by a train means being killed by a train.

    Suicide can only be called after an investigation by a coroner. Until that investigation is complete it isn't suicide. The police are usually quick to decide if they believe a death is suspicious (ie involving foul play) or not (ie accident or suicide).
     
  3. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

    Messages:
    11,129
    Joined:
    13 May 2008
    There's a preference to try and avoid reporting suicide as such. There's a lot of evidence that extensive media coverage of suicide can be a factor in prompting others to take their lives- it can in many cases be the final "push".
     
  4. GingerRH

    GingerRH Member

    Messages:
    72
    Joined:
    21 Apr 2015
    Oh okay thanks. So say if someone was to by hit by a train (that was there intention) but it wasn't fatal, they could be given a fine for trespassing as well? That's not a nice sequence of events!
     
  5. jopsuk

    jopsuk Veteran Member

    Messages:
    11,129
    Joined:
    13 May 2008
    they'd be unlikely to be fined. It's theoretically possible but the authorities will take the compassionate line with those that try to kill themselves.
     
  6. A-driver

    A-driver Established Member

    Messages:
    4,483
    Joined:
    9 May 2011

    As far as I'm aware suicide itself is still illegal in this country. However the most likely course of action would be to help the person. But theoretically one could be fined or prosecuted for trespassing on the railway, even if they were intending suicide. However I'd be very surprised if anyone ever tried to prosecute a suicidal person for an attempt on their own life!
     
  7. DeeGee

    DeeGee Member

    Messages:
    867
    Joined:
    24 Jul 2012
    Location:
    Great Grimsby
    Decriminalised in 1961 in England and Wales.
     
  8. Antman

    Antman Established Member

    Messages:
    3,580
    Joined:
    5 Dec 2013
    Location:
    London
    Unlikely I would think, being hit by a train would have surely deterred them from doing it again
     
  9. Quakkerillo

    Quakkerillo Member

    Messages:
    441
    Joined:
    23 Jan 2015
    There have been examples of people who failed a train-suicide, only to do it again a few years later (with more success).

    On criminalisation: It may be seen as trespassing in se, but I doubt anyone would be fined for that if suicide was the plan. These people more often than not need support, not extra issues to deal with.
     
  10. A-driver

    A-driver Established Member

    Messages:
    4,483
    Joined:
    9 May 2011

    Ah-thanks for that.
     
  11. TDK

    TDK Established Member

    Messages:
    4,126
    Joined:
    19 Apr 2008
    Location:
    Wrexham
    Until suicide or accidental death from a collision with a train the incident site is deemed as a crime scene, sometimes it can take hours for the verdict of suicide or accidental death to be announced causing extensive delays, I remember one I attended at Harlescott near Shrewsbury and the line was closed for 6 hours until the verdict of suicide was confirmed.
     
  12. RichardN

    RichardN Member

    Messages:
    360
    Joined:
    29 Nov 2013
    Last edited: 11 Jun 2015
  13. Dieseldriver

    Dieseldriver Member

    Messages:
    296
    Joined:
    9 Apr 2012
    Wouldn't have had much sympathy if the car driver had received the death penalty. Thanks to their selfish and reckless actions people's lives were destroyed. Much the same as Ufton Nervet. Last year there was an incident on one of my routes (I was the first train throug and had to examine the line) where a woman parked her car on an AHB crossing with the intention of killing herself. I really couldn't give much of a **** about her, she clearly didn't care much about me, my colleagues and other rail users safety. People committing suicide by standing in front of a train, I do have sympathy for as although the experience is traumatic for the driver involved, they are not putting people in a position of being physically harmed.
    Signed, a train driver who has first hand knowledge of how horrific the circumstances of a train striking a road vehicle obstructing the railway can be...
     
  14. RichardN

    RichardN Member

    Messages:
    360
    Joined:
    29 Nov 2013
    I've no doubt it was stupid, but I don't agree with the death penalty at all, and I find it a bit strange to think you can punish somebody who wants to kill himself by granting his wish...
     
  15. 61653 HTAFC

    61653 HTAFC Established Member

    Messages:
    6,604
    Joined:
    18 Dec 2012
    Location:
    Another planet...
    I'd agree with this... However had Mr. Drysdale survived at Ufton Nervet, I'd have fully supported any plan to prosecute him not for attempting suicide but for the unlawful killing of the train driver and passengers by leaving his car on the tracks. Apologies if this sounds blunt (and for the record, I myself have in the past considered suicide by train) but if one is trying to end their life, surrounding themselves with a ton of metal just seems illogical. I suppose they do it that way because they're scared of" chickening out" maybe.
     
  16. OneOffDave

    OneOffDave Member

    Messages:
    144
    Joined:
    2 Apr 2015
    While I agree with the sentiment of prosecuting survivors in the case of another Ufton Nervet, I doubt that a case would progress very far as the mental state of the individual at the time would have to be taken into account and as they were suicidal, I think it would be hard to argue that they were in a rational frame of mind.
     
  17. DownSouth

    DownSouth Established Member

    Messages:
    1,545
    Joined:
    10 Dec 2011
    A civil lawsuit to recover (some) damages might be more in the public interest than a criminal prosecution for that sort of case.
     
  18. HarleyDavidson

    HarleyDavidson Established Member

    Messages:
    2,529
    Joined:
    23 Aug 2014
    You'll find that most units & loco's now have FFCCTV to record this sort of thing and this will help apportion the cause & blame.
     
  19. Bodiddly

    Bodiddly Member

    Messages:
    573
    Joined:
    7 Feb 2013
    Location:
    The people's republic of Inverness
    We can't imagine what is going through someone's mind when they decide to commit suicide under a train. We can only assume that there is absolutely no thought for others. When you take into account those who commit suicide by deliberately endangering others i.e driving the car onto the crossing, I would also assume that there has been more thought gone into why they choose to end it that way. It may possibly be one more angry 'up yours' to the world. Some people will say that the act of suicide is very selfish, personally I do not think this way, I just find it incredibly sad. What I do say though is that the act of murder suicide is an abhorrently selfish thing to do.
     
  20. Dr_Paul

    Dr_Paul Member

    Messages:
    291
    Joined:
    3 Sep 2013
    I was once told by a railwayman that when someone is hit and killed by a train, the first thing that is done is to check whether the person was in possession of a valid ticket, the explanation being something to do with insurance that depended upon whether the person was entitled to be on railway premises. I don't know whether this railwayman was telling me a rather bad-taste joke, but my question is to ask whether this is true.
     
  21. fowler9

    fowler9 Established Member

    Messages:
    6,020
    Joined:
    29 Oct 2013
    Location:
    Liverpool
    Anyone who deliberately stops their car in front of a train is clearly not thinking straight. I would guess that there are laws in place to deal with this sort of thing and incidents such as the Germanwings one (if it had been possible to stop it) without the person just getting a slap on the wrist.
     
  22. jamesst

    jamesst Member

    Messages:
    216
    Joined:
    4 May 2011
    I've known it be done with a person taken ill on a train/station before...
     
  23. Mutant Lemming

    Mutant Lemming Established Member

    Messages:
    2,336
    Joined:
    8 Aug 2011
    Location:
    London
    I think it would be pointless issuing a fine as the person would most likely be committed under the mental health act for their own (and others) safety and would be unlikely to be in a position to pay it for some time.

    As for many who commit or try to commit suicide you will find that jumping under a train wasn't their first intention and they may have made other attempts by other methods (pills, gas etc.) and they have this image of it being a quick and instant escape from whatever is troubling them.
    As for those who think it is a selfish act you just can't fathom what is going through someone's mind when they become blinkered and desperate enough to want to escape the pain of their existence. Many years ago there was a young girl of 17 who had been repeatedly raped and was so traumatised by the event that on the very first occasion she was let out of hospital she went to the nearest tube station and jumped under the first incoming train. It is not one of those things you can come out with a black and white answer to and call people selfish or otherwise without knowing why people have become so desperate that they want to end their lives.
     
    Last edited: 13 Jun 2015
  24. Merseysider

    Merseysider Established Member Fares Advisor

    Messages:
    3,599
    Joined:
    22 Jan 2014
    Location:
    North West
    Quite possibly true in a broader context. I was involved in an incident (not PUT) at Conway Park a good few years back and when the staff filled out the paperwork/log sheet/whatever it's called one of the questions was whether I had a valid ticket.
     
  25. reb0118

    reb0118 Established Member Fares Advisor

    Messages:
    2,630
    Joined:
    28 Jan 2010
    Location:
    Bo'ness, West Lothian
    Another reason, in the days of slam door trains without central door locking at least, was to check for a ticket to ascertain as far as possible if that person had fallen from a train, either yours or another.
     
  26. ReverendFozz

    ReverendFozz Member

    Messages:
    485
    Joined:
    26 Feb 2011
    Location:
    Murton, Co. Durham
    Is suicide selfish...Yes and No...It is selfish to people they leave behind to try and pick, and No, because the person going through with itdoes not believe there worth anything anymore, a depressed mind is horrible, and it is hard to think, make sense and function normally.

    I have spoke at length before about my own ordeals before, witnessing a suicide in London, although I was at one end of the platform from where it happened, I saw enough to know what was going on, acts like that are incredibly selfish to the driver, other passengers, the poor b*****d who has to clean it up and family left behind...I myself, am incredibly selfish, tried suicide many times, and thought about Suicide by train, but could bring myself to do it, thoughts of a driver came into my mind, that when I ended trying again, I made my way to Durham Viaduct, sat on the edge, waited for a non-stop train to come through hoping a bit of a draft from it would blow me off the edge...BTP and Durham Police found me and talked me down.

    In the past in my mind, I have not been able to think straight, while I have gone through many suicide attempts, I now think back and think that I probably was quite selfish to a point and probably did it to get the help I needed as I felt nobody cared, I nearly got my wish at 15 when I ended up in ICU after an Overdose, doctors did not know how to do deal with me and had never seen anyone react the way I did that day, if the paramedics were 10-20 minutes later I would not be talking about it, luckily I held on and fought for my life...
     
  27. Mutant Lemming

    Mutant Lemming Established Member

    Messages:
    2,336
    Joined:
    8 Aug 2011
    Location:
    London
    As I said initially - there is no black and white with this. People have their own reasons for doing whatever it is they do.
    Each situation has to be taken on it's own merit.
    There are people in immense pain who want it to stop. In such an instance who is more selfish - are they for wanting to end their life or their family who want them to keep on living even though they are suffering?
    There are no cut and dried answers for this just numerous individual stories.
     
  28. JDi

    JDi Member

    Messages:
    110
    Joined:
    6 Feb 2017
    I believe in Belgium, where euthanasia is legal, those who attempt suicide are prosecuted. Even in the case of those who do not survive, their families are often forced to pay compensation to the railways.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...cost-damaged-trains-Belgian-courts-ruled.html
     
  29. GW43125

    GW43125 Established Member

    Messages:
    1,171
    Joined:
    8 Dec 2014
  30. Master29

    Master29 Member

    Messages:
    614
    Joined:
    19 Feb 2015
    I think jumping off a bridge onto tracks pretty much indicates an attempt on ones own life whatever the semantics.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page