On 12 August 2020 a passenger train was derailed by a landslip near Carmont in Scotland. The driver, the conductor and a passenger lost their lives in this incident, prompting the rail industry to make some urgent changes to the Rule Book.

These changes were first published in the Weekly Operating Notice and took effect from 5th September 2020.

The opportunity was taken to provide clearer instructions for the actions required if damage to structures or earthwork are observed, and if unusual flows or pools of water that could cause damage are seen.

These new rules are in addition to the existing rules for reporting flooding on the track or track defects.

A number of changes were made following a further review and these will be published on 6th March and come into force on 5th June. All the instructions concerning flowing or pooling water have been included in the section dealing with floods. There is a new section concerning the use of GSM-R advisory messages when severe rainfall has occurred or has been forecast.   

It’s important to remember that the investigations into the Carmont derailment are not yet complete, and these changes aren’t intended to pre-judge the outcome of the investigation. There may be more changes as RAIB learns more about the causes of the accident.

On this page you’ll find resources that explain the Rule Book changes. There are different versions available tailored to drivers, signallers, controllers and other rail staff working on the line. They have been updated to include these latest changes.

Introduction from Tim Shoveller, Managing Director, North West and Central region, Network Rail

Briefing video for drivers

Briefing video for signallers

Briefing video for staff working on or near the line

Briefing video for controllers