Bethan Roper Wiki
Bethan Roper Biography
Who was Bethan Roper?
A charity worker was killed when she was struck by a protruding tree branch while leaning out of a train window, according to an investigation.
Bethan Roper suffered fatal head injuries on a Great Western Railway (GWR) train traveling at about 75 mph on the night of December 1, 2018.
Miss Roper, from Penarth, South Wales, was leaning out of a door window when an ash branch growing in the dirt adjacent to the line struck her head, according to the investigation.
Toxicology tests found that Miss Roper, who was returning home with friends after a Christmas shopping day in Bath at the time, had a blood alcohol level of 142 mg in 100 ml of blood, which means it was almost double the alcohol limit.
How old is Bethan Roper?
She was 28 year old.
Despite receiving first aid from other passengers, the ambulance staff pronounced Miss Roper dead at Bristol Temple Meads station.
London Paddington to Exeter service had just left Bath Spa station heading towards Bristol Temple Meads when the accident occurred in the Twerton area, Avon Coroner’s Court heard.
Mark Hamilton, an inspector with the Railroad Accident Investigation Branch, said in the investigation: ‘We established that one of the group of friends opened the door window and at least one other friend leaned out of the window.
But about two and a half minutes after the train left Bath Spa station, Bethan leaned out of the window and a few seconds later fell on her back after sustaining a serious head injury.
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“The simple conclusion we have drawn from the evidence presented was that Bethan’s head came into contact with a tree on the side of the line and that tree was growing on the Network Rail infrastructure.”
Mr. Hamilton said the car was a Mk 3 type coach and was equipped with a window that opened to allow passengers to use the handle on the outside when they needed to exit the train.
“There is no physical feature installed on the train to prevent a passenger from opening the window when the train is far from the station,” said Hamilton.
He said that Mk 3 coaches, first introduced in the 1970s, are being phased out across the network and being replaced by doors that open and close with the use of an electronic button.
The investigation heard that above the door window there was a yellow sticker with the words: “Caution, do not look out the window when the train is moving.”
“One of the causal factors was in relation to the warning signs and we concluded that Bethan, as a passenger, was not deterred by these warning signs,” said Hamilton.
Our report has concluded that the warning sign on display complied with the rail group standard that was in effect at the time.
However, the RAIB considers that the wording, particularly the use of the word “caution”, suggests that perhaps leaning is something that can be done with some care.
“The yellow background is traditionally recognized as a feature of a warning sign, while the red background can convey danger.
“We also see that the signal is much smaller than the other signals.”
She added: “It is not possible for us to understand or conclude exactly what influence signage had on the decisions Bethan made.”
The investigation heard that after the death of a passenger leaning out of a train window in South London in August 2016, GWR completed a risk assessment of its windows with slanted light.
This resulted in a plan to install enhanced warning signs with a red background by May 2018, but this had not happened when Miss Roper was assassinated seven months later.
Two staff members involved in the task had left the company and a system that tracks work pieces failed. The signs were updated after the death of Miss Roper.
Hamilton said Network Rail, which is responsible for line-side vegetation management, had conducted inspections of the section of the line when the incident occurred, but that the tree “was not considered a hazard.”
A post-mortem examination revealed Miss Roper’s cause of death as head injuries to her.
Ms. Roper worked for the Welsh Refugee Council charity and was president of Young Socialists Cardiff.