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- Main article: Report of the 7 July Review Committee
The first hour – the uninjured and walking wounded
Communication from people in authority within the first 15 minutes ‘I think simple communication and direction for people to get out was the order of the day – as quickly as possible to safety. Like good people, we sat waiting; we had no idea’ Michael, survivor of the Aldgate explosion40 ‘Information is essential when in shock people freeze and can’t make rational decisions, people need to know what to do, even if it is to remain on the train and wait’ Steve, survivor of the King’s Cross/Russell Square explosion41 4.1 Survivors of the Tube explosions told us of the crucial importance of communication with an authority figure of some sort within the first 15 minutes after the explosion. Those who did receive some form of instruction as to what to do told us of the immense reassurance and relief this provided. Those who received no such instruction or information told us of their fear that perhaps nobody knew they were there, that there might be a fire, that they might be breathing in poisonous fumes, and spoke of their uncertainty about what to do. Passengers in carriages away from the explosion did not know what had happened, had no means of raising the alarm, and were left to speculate and wait for help to arrive. 4.2 George was standing approximately a metre away from the bomb in the King’s Cross/Russell Square train. He told us of his immense relief when he heard a voice of authority instructing those who could get to the front of the train to do so to disembark through the driver’s cab. ‘Then, somebody said, in a very commanding voice, “Right, the driver has said…” When he mentioned this word “driver” my spirits were lifted, because up to that point I thought I was a goner anyway. I thought we had hit another train. If we hit another train, he is dead; he is finished. We no longer have guards, so we have no guard, no driver, you’re stuck down in the tunnel, you have this black smoke pouring in, what do you do? When this guy said “The driver said”, I thought, “The driver is alive”.42 4.3 Ian was seriously injured in the King’s Cross/Russell Square train. He was thrown into the carriage doors, which were blown out by the blast into the walls of the tunnel, where he hit electric cables. He suffered severe burns to his chest and legs, severe 40 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 22 41 Written submission from Steve, Volume 3, p. 228 42 Transcript of interview with George, 11 April 2006, Volume 3, page 128 60 of 151 bruising to his chest, damage to his ears and a fracture in his foot. He came round from unconsciousness and heard the voice of the driver of the train, who rather than leave the train had decided to stay and help survivors. Ian spoke of the crucial reassurance that was provided by the driver, who instructed him to leave the train and make his way down the tunnel to Russell Square station. ‘What you actually look for in these circumstances is someone who can tell you what to do; even if it is a basic “Stay here” or “Move there”, you just need guidance because you are a bit all over the place, as you can imagine. Having worked my way over to [the driver of the train], he said, “Walk down the track to Russell Square”. I can’t really overestimate the importance of someone being there because you don’t know what to do. Logically, say if you were hit today, you would think, “Well, obviously you would walk down the track”, but whether you would have actually done that without someone actually telling you to do it, I’m not sure. I was always quite grateful to the Tube driver’.43 .4 For those outside the first carriage of the King’s Cross/Russell Square train, help did not arrive for 25 minutes to half an hour after the train was plunged into darkness. Jane was in the third carriage of the Piccadilly line train between King’s Cross and Russell Square. She described to us the first minutes after the explosion: ‘In the darkness, people spoke to each other trying to work out what wa and back of the Tube to try to work out what was going on. We did not how long we were going to be down there; we did not know if anyone knew we were there. We kept on hoping and listening that someone was getting in contact with us and going to find us’.44 4.5 Kristina was in the sixth carriage on the Piccadilly Line train. She told us of her halfhour wait for communication from anyone official: ‘There was no communication from anyone – no assistance. We were stuck there; people took charge and tried to keep everyone calm. We had no idea what had happened, being on the last carriage, no idea how we were going to get out, no idea if we could get out or if anyone knew we were there or were going to come and get us … we were stuck there, for us, for about half an hour, not knowing if we were going to live or die, if someone was going to come and get us or not’.45 4.6 Kirsty told us how some passengers, in the absence of any information or instruction, had attempted to open the doors, but despite the efforts of six men they were unable to open them: 4 s going on. The thick smoke and soot meant that there was a fear of fire or maybe chemicals. People reassured each other; we tried to pass messages to the front know 43 Transcript of interview with Ian, 13 April 2006, Volume 3, page 177 44 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 24 45 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 47 61 of 151 ‘They had tried to open the doors, but the doors only opened about a foot; they had three men on each side, and there was absolutely no way of getting them any further o and cut himself quite badly in the process just to keep the doors open’. 4.7 assengers managed to break the glass in the window of the door, only to discover that hrough the doors into the tunnel. People were panicking about the possibility of there being a fire. n the train. For half an hour, passengers awaited instructions and assistance. After half an hour, two police o ng the track to King’s Cross. The arrival of those two police officers was the first communication with 4.8 Michael, who survived the Aldgate explo ion, suggested that it might have been possible f ate with passengers on the train and instruct them to evacuate. Beverli also said she had re , 4.9 know what had happened, whether they were in danger, or what they should do. Those who thought about evacuating the rned official source is essential under these circumstances, to provide reassurance and evacuation instructions, and to protect the safety of the pen. One man actually wedged his shoulder in between the doors, 46 P the wall was only 10cm away so there was no way of disembarking the train t Some people wanted to disembark the train via the back door of the carriage, but others were afraid that the tracks would still be live and therefore wanted to stay i fficers arrived and led an evacuation back alo passengers outside the first carriage. s or someone to use a loudhailer from the platform to communic expected to see more use of loudhailers at the station.47 Tim, a survivor of the Edgwa Road bomb who comforted the wounded in the carriage whilst waiting for help to arrive, said, ‘I do feel that the Tube drivers need a more robust system of communication that works deep underground and is not reliant on wires at all. This could also be patched into a tannoy-type system to announce where the help will come from and that indeed, it will come. Mental reassurance cannot be understated’.48 In the minutes following the explosions on the Tube, passengers outside the affected carriages did not train via the doors did not know whether or not the current was still tu on. Passengers were afraid that the smoke would be followed by fire. They did not know whether anyone knew they were there or if help was on its way. Communication from an passengers trapped underground. Volume 3, page 35 46 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 29 47 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, 48 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 10 62 of 151 Recommendations 22 and 23 We recommend that London’s emergency plans be revised to include an explicit provision for communication with people affected by a major incident as soon as possible after the arrival of emergency or transport service personnel at the scene. We recommend that Transport for London review the communications systems that are in place to enable station staff and/or the emergency services to communicate with passengers on trains that are trapped in tunnels. We request that Transport for London provide us with a report on how it plans to take forward this work, in time for our follow-up review in November 2006. ‘I c carriag said, “Has anybody ot a torch?” I getting a mob have quite a see the hand the person tha / ussell Square explosion ere plunged into total darkness. This meant t difficult 4.11 Transpo that em out by alternat rather than relying on wiring between the carriages. It has been suggested to us by Emergency lighting ouldn’t see. I had never experienced anything like that before. I can’t talk for other es but, in the first carriage, you could see nothing. Then somebody g thought, “That is fair enough”. He said, “Get your mobile”. What is the point of ile phone out? Then, apparently, the modern phone, if you open them up, they bright light. All you see is a beam about half an inch in diameter. You couldn’t that was holding that light; you couldn’t see the arm; you certainly couldn’t see t was holding it. They soon put them away, because it wasn’t having any effect at all’ George, survivor of the King’s Cross R 4.10 The internal lights went out, and emergency lighting systems were disabled by the explosions, so passengers in the affected carriages w hat passengers could not see their way out of the carriages, and it was to provide first aid in the immediate aftermath of the explosions. rt for London has told us that lighting worked well in the other carriages, but ergency lighting in the carriages where the bombs were detonated was taken the blast. We understand that Transport for London is conducting research into ive forms of emergency lighting, which would have an individual power supply survivors that drivers could carry torches in their cabs for use in the event of a malfunction in emergency lighting. 63 of 151 Recommendation 24 We recommend that Transport for London conduct a feasibility study on alternative forms of emergency lighting for new/refurbished rolling stock, and report back to us by May 2007. We recommend that Transport for London review the potential for providing torches in drivers’ cabs for use in the event of loss of lighting and failure of emergency lights. First aid equipment 4.12 Given the delay before the arrival of emergency services at the scene of the explo on the Tube, passengers told us of their frustration at the lack of availability of ba first aid kits on trains. Ben was in the train that stopped adjacent to the bombed train at Edgware Road. He told us, ‘The driver of the train from Paddington passed through our carriage at this point checking to see if anyone was injured. I asked him if he could open the first-aid box, as we needed to get bandages etc into the second train. He told me that he did not have the key; he also said that the box would be empty anyway’. Gill, a survivor from King’s Cross/Russell Square, pointed out that the sions sic 49 re were many y be 4.14 .15 We understand that London Underground is carrying out an emergency equipment review covering all its stations and trains to determine what changes in emergency equipment provision might be necessary following last July’s events. This should include consideration of whether it is practicable to provide first aid and other emergency equipment on stations. An alternative, or additional, measure might be to introduce mobile facilities that can rapidly deploy the necessary equipment to affected sites. This could be organised by Transport for London jointly with the London Ambulance Service and other emergency services. 4.13 potential situations where basic first aid supplies would be useful on Tube trains. Ben recommended that there should be first-aid kits on public transport (not only on the Tube), and that, ’where there is provision for the kit to be available, it should actuall stocked’.50 First aid kits are currently provided at every Tube station, in the supervisor’s office. We understand that space considerations have made it difficult to carry first aid on all trains. Usually, if someone on a train is taken ill, the train stops at the next station where first aid can be administered. 4 49 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 9 50 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 11 64 of 151 Recommendations 25 and 26 Transport for London/London Underground should produce a plan for provision of basic first aid kits on trains and at stations, in time for the 2007/08 budget-setting process. Transport for London should also consider whether it would be practicable to carry basic first aid kits on buses, and Network Rail operators should produce plans for provision of first-aid kits for public use (and for use by qualified first-aiders) at mainline railway stations and on trains. We recommend that Transport for London and Network Rail report back to us on this issue by November 2006. locked doors 4 had been facing the tunnel. He had been standing in the bombed carriage; the door of his carriage had been blown off, and he was trying to force open the do lling and, I think that is because of the blast, he could not hear. His clothes were ripped as f w if it is due to the design of the train, or whether our train became buckled, but we g 4.17 ge, and another girl, tried to open the sliding doors. We saw one of the drivers, the orange glow of his coat, from outside come to the door. They could not part the doors more than a few inches. I thought I was really badly injured at the time; I did not realise how lucky I was. I shouted at three big guys standing opposite to help them, but they were looking back in B .16 Passengers were unable to disembark because they were could not open the carriage doors. Ben, who was in the train that stopped alongside the bombed Edgware Road train, gave the following description of the scene as passengers attempted to open the doors of his train: ‘A man appeared at our carriage door from the bombed train, into the door that ors to get into our train. He was shouting for help. He was ye and he was bleeding heavily. He looked like the victim of a bomb blast. It w then that we all realised that something terrible had happened. The man managed to get his hands through the rubber seal running down the centre o the door, and three of us went forward to try to open it. I do not kno could not force the door open more than three, maybe four, inches. It was enough for him to get his hand round; again, we could see that he was bleedin heavily’.51 Michael, who survived the Aldgate bombing, told a similar story: ‘The girl who had taken char 51 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 9 65 of 151 such total shock that they could not have helped anyone. The doors would not en started to feel trapped and worried about fire’.52 4.18 ed by ical and air supplies are lost. These may be used y London Underground staff to facilitate a controlled train evacuation. The principal be co-ordinated by London Underground staff. When trains stop tunnels there is physically not enough room to escape (except onto platforms). assengers evacuating by side doors could potentially put themselves at more risk as er of electrocution or being hit by an oncoming train. For these erground does not have any plans to enable passengers to open .53 ot clear to passengers trapped in the bombed Underground trains on 7 July. budge. We th The doors on most London Underground rolling stock are not designed to be open passengers. There are facilities to open selected doors via internal and external door locks in an emergency when all electr b method of evacuation on London Underground rolling stock is via the train ends and then onto a station platform, onto an assisting train or along the track - all these methods will usually in P there is the dang reasons, London Und carriage doors in the event of power loss. 4.19 Passengers on the affected trains on 7 July did not know what to do. Some people began getting off the trains through blown-out doors. Others tried to open carriage doors but were unsuccessful. Others began to leave via the back doors of the trains. For those who were in carriages where the emergency lights were working, it might have been useful if there had been safety or evacuation instructions displayed inside the carriages, such as are displayed on overground trains. 4.20 Steve, who was in the second carriage of the King’s Cross/Russell Square train, recommended that clearer emergency information should be displayed inside Tube train carriages. He wrote, ‘If it was there I didn’t see it, it needs to be clearer. Bear in mind the train was so busy and dark it was impossible to see the sides of the train for any “what to do in an emergency” signage. Possibly illuminated signs, or a pre-recorded audio instruction to get around the problem of the dark’ 4.21 Passengers need to know what to do in the event of an emergency on a Tube train. They need to know, for example, that evacuations will normally be carried out through the end of the train rather than carriage doors. This was n Recommendation 27 We recommend that Transport for London install clearly visible safety notices inside the carriages on all Tube trains, instructing passengers what to do in case of emergency. We request that Transport for London provide us with a plan, by November 2006, showing the timescale for the installation of safety notices in all carriages on Tube trains. 52 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 20 53 Written submission from Steve, Volume 228 66 of 151 The First Hour - reception of uninjured and walking wounded people 5 67 of 151 Reception of uninjured and walking wounded people ‘People s had jus we k nob ng ‘Wha the people inside the station’ 5.1 heir or emergency services officer. At the Russell Square end of train 311, the evacuation was led by one of the two tely d who walked all the way ome on his own having left the scene in an understandable state of shock. 5.2 and llowing guidance on how uninjured people should be managed after being removed om hazard. It clearly states that they should be corralled to a survivor reception centre and to be triaged by the London Ambulance Service: m the Police for collation of details and witness statements.’ required direction; they just did not know where to go. Lots of people from King’s Cros t walked off and left the scene. I know that is the same from Tavistock Square, because now from reports that the bus driver walked off and ended up in hospital. There was ody there to say, “This is where you are going. This is what you need to do”. Taki control and offering direction is very, very important’ Paul, Edgware Road54 t we needed at that time was somebody to come and take control of the outside of the station, and also to help look after Rachel, King’s Cross/Russell Square55 The first passengers to emerge from the tunnels were either uninjured or had suffered only minor injuries. They were passengers who had either disembarked the train of t own accord or had been evacuated by an Underground drivers. At the other end of the train, two police officers arrived after approxima half an hour and led passengers to the platform at King’s Cross station. At Aldgate, some passengers got off the train by themselves and walked to Liverpool Street or Aldgate station. Others waited for instructions from someone in authority. At Tavistock Square, many of those who were uninjured or apparently not seriously injure simply left the scene. These included the driver of the bus, h In any major or catastrophic incident, it is likely that there will be uninjured people people with minor injuries, and that they will be among the first people to leave the scene of the incident. The London Emergency Service Procedure Manual includes the fo fr to collect their details ‘[Uninjured] people will have been involved in the incident, but will not necessarily want or require medical attention. They must be removed from the hazard by the London Fire Brigade. Once these people have been removed fro any hazards, and processed through a triage sieve by the London Ambulance Service they must be handed over to 006, Volume 3, page 60 54 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 57 55 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2 68 of 151 ‘They will all be witnesses, however, and the Police will need to collate their details for the benefit of the Casualty Bureau as well as the Senior Investigating Officer. This can be done at a suitable premises nearby, called the survivor reception centre’.56 What uninjured and walking wounded survivors need .3 People who are able to walk away from a major incident may not require urgent and immediate medical attention. Emergency services personnel at the scenes will instinctively, and quite rightly, focus their immediate attention on those who are trapped and/or severely injured. That is why it is important that there are systems in place to meet the needs of those who are less seriously injured, or uninjured. .4 The London Emergency Services Procedure Manual contains some guidance on the needs of survivors of major incidents who are not seriously injured. The non-statutory guidance to the Civil Contingencies Act, which is now in force but was not on 7 July, includes further details. On the basis of these documents, and our discussions with survivors of the 7 July attacks, we consider that uninjured and walking wounded need the a. b. information about what has h c. advice about what to do d. assistance in contacting their loved ones e. support in their distress f. assistance and advice to help them to get home safely g. information about where to go for support in the days and weeks following the incident h. to give their details to the Police 5.5 The best way to cater for these needs is to establish a survivor reception area somewhere close to the site of the incident. The London Emergency Services Procedure Manual stipulates that this will be done in the first instance by the emergency services, and that the relevant local authority or authorities will take over once they have established venues. We have found that there was no systematic establishment of survivor reception areas on 7 July. As a result, many survivors simply left the scenes of the explosions, without having given their personal details to anyone or received any advice or support. 5.6 Local authorities have plans in place for the establishment of casualty reception centres in the event of a major incident. Westminster prepared the Porchester Centre, and Tower Hamlets mobilised three local schools for potential use as survivor reception centres, but they were apparently not used in any systematic way, if at all (20 or so people were sent to a Tower Hamlets school, but none were sent to the Porchester Centre), possibly because emergency services at the scene did not know about them. 5 5 following things immediately after leaving the scene of the incident: first aid / triage appened 56 London Emergency Services Procedure Manual, para 9.2, page 34 69 of 151 5.7 At Russell Square, volunteers from Great Ormond Street Hospital set up a ‘field hospital’ in a nearby hote b to receive the walking wounded and uninjured or those without physical injuries. At King’s Cross, some survivors were held in the ticket hall of the station before being y 5.8 At Edgware Road, a reception centre for the walking wounded was set up by a passerby, Paul. Paul came to our m 06 and told us about his experiences. He described how he saw people coming out of the station and decided to There w assessed people’s injuries and assigned them an initial priority category for treatment. His initiative is quite r arly it should not be left to a passer-by to establish a key element of the response to a major incident. Paul’s actions raise the question of why none of the emergency services at the scenes set up 5.9 ould e veral d asked him if we needed to be tested to see if the smoke we had been breathing in may 5.10 out 30 to 5 people walked out of the train, via the driver’s cab, to Russell Square station. Rachel told us get s time. I went and stood outside the station and I tried to l, ut this seems to have been used primarily for the injured, rather than taken to hospital by bus, but there was precious little in the way of advice, first aid, or support for those waiting there. At Tavistock Square, again local businesses were used to hold the injured whilst they awaited ambulances to take them to hospital. But man others simply left the scene and walked home. eeting on 23 March 20 set up what he called a casualty rendezvous point in a nearby Marks and Spencer store. ere 150 people inside the store after an hour. Paul, a former firefighter, emarkable and commendable. But cle similar reception areas for survivors. Ben, who was on the train adjacent to the bombed Edgware Road train, told us that upon leaving the station, he approached a police officer and asked him what he sh do: ‘I then carried on up the stairs at Edgware Road and found myself outside th station. There was quite a lot of confusion above ground. There were se police cars, ambulances, blocking off the road. I walked up to the cordon and asked a policeman what I should do. He advised me to go home. I then aske him if I needed to leave my name and address and my details. I also have some sort of chemical poison etc. He told me to go home and watch the news to find out’.57 At Russell Square, passengers from the first carriage of train 311 began arriving in the station about 20 minutes after the explosion, having been led to the platform there by one of the two train drivers who had been in the driver’s cab at the time. Ab 3 of her experience on arriving at Russell Square: ‘I was surprised when I got to Russell Square to find there were scenes of chaos. There was a member of the Tube staff handing out water that he had requisitioned from the store outside, but there were still commuters trying to into the station at thi 57 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 10 70 of 151 prevent commuters coming into the station…There were no ambulances; th were no doctors’. ere 5.11 Amy, who was in the fourth carriage of the King’s Cross/Russell Square train, left King’s Cross station accompanied by another passenger. Amy told us, ‘we came out across the road, where Burger King is. There was no-one there – no police or anything. Obviously ing taped across the road going into King’s Cross. Then the lady just left me and I was standing there all by 5.12 ving ic iving details, even though they were as close as me to the bomb, they could have information 5.13 n ene ng around the front of the bus that I was on to the other side of way from this. I don’t remember a huge after that, other than I know there were a lot of o one seemed to know where they oing on’.61 5.14 tend to the most urgent task at the scene, which is the rescue and treatment of the nt for people to be at the scene whose job is to conduct the less immediately urgent but nevertheless crucially important tasks, such lved. The be o ns – the shops and hotels close to the stations affected by the 7 July attacks had not been involved in any discussions prior to 58 we heard the sirens. There was, at that point, I think, tape be myself’.59 Steve suggested that, ‘A member of staff or police should prevent people from lea the station. I was able to walk onto the street covered in blood and a head injury, publ told me to go back. Two of my friends were able to leave the station without g that was essential to the investigation which would be lost’.60 M was on the bus in front of the Number 30 at Tavistock Square. He saw the explosio at close quarters and was deeply traumatised by the experience. He described the sc in the minutes following the explosion: ‘I remember comi the road because I thought I must get a amount of what happened people leaving the Square very quickly. N were going or what was g There is an understandable tendency on the part of emergency services personnel to seriously injured. That is why it is importa as triaging the less seriously injured and collecting the details of everyone invo problem may stem from the fact that the London Emergency Services Procedure Manual does not identify who will be responsible for the establishment of a survivor reception area, where survivors can be assessed by paramedics, and where their details can collected and, if necessary, they can be ‘tagged’ – their names attached to them so that they can be identified easily on arrival at hospital if they lose consciousness. It may als arise partly from the fact that London Underground does not have any predetermined reception areas for people evacuated from statio 7 July about the possibility of their facilities and premises being used in this way. 58 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 52 59 Transcript of interview with Amy, 18 April 2006, Volume 3, page 94 60 Written submission from Steve, Volume 3, page 229 61 Transcript of interview with M, 18 April 2006, Volume 3, page 210 71 of 151 Recommendations 28 to 30 We recommend that the London Resilience Forum identify a lead agency for the establishment of survivor reception centres at the sites of major incidents in the initial stages before handover to local authorities. We believe this task would most appropriately fall to the Metropolitan Police Service, which is already responsible for the collection of personal details of survivors. We invite the London Resilience Forum to report back to us in November 2006 to tell us which agency will take the lead, and what plans have been put in place to ensure that survivor reception centres are set up close to the scene of any major incident in future. We recommend that London Underground Limited, train operating companies and Transport for London identify, in consultation with local authorities and the emergency services, at least two potential survivor reception centres close to Tube stations, overground rail stations and major bus stations in central London. They should then liaise with the owners/occupiers of those sites and involve them in emergency planning processes and exercises. Because survivors were not directed to a reception area, many of them walked away without ls of the u a. s and offer medical follow-up and assistance. d. e. The police may need to contact them to return personal belongings left at the scene of the incident. f. Survivors themselves will want information in the following days about what has happened, whether there are any health risks they need to be aware of 5.15 their details having been collected. The collection of names and contact detai ninjured and walking wounded is crucial for a number of reasons: In the days, weeks and months that follow the incident, survivors will have ongoing needs in terms of information, advice and support. It may be necessary for authorities to contact them for medical follow-up. It may be discovered after the event that they are at risk of health problems, for example resulting from the inhalation of noxious substances. It will then be necessary to inform them of these risk b. The police and other services will need to contact them to provide information about the services that are available to them. c. They are potential witnesses to the subsequent police investigation. Friends and relatives of survivors will be trying to find out where they are, and if they are not able to get in touch directly they are likely to contact the Casualty Bureau and possibly arrive at the scenes or at receiving hospitals. The Casualty Bureau needs their details to marry them up with reports of people potentially involved in the incident. 72 of 151 (including post-traumatic stress disorder,62 as well as other physical health risks relating, for example, to inhalation of noxious substances), and what assistance is available should they require it. 5.16 arly rectly affected by the blast, left Aldgate soon after exiting the station. The trauma of what they had experienced probably manifested itself later on, several days 5.17 d herself on the pavement outside. Kirsty told us: that nobody approached me once, and spoke to me. Everyone was clearly in shock; everyone was covered in soot, with black hing e ught, ‘well, I have no idea what has happened here and, if someone has my details, maybe when they find out 5.18 5.19 n a quarter of the number of people who are estimated to have been directly caught up in the attacks. We heard from a number of survivors who told us that their details were not collected on 7 July. Jonathan was in the carriage next to the bombed carriage at Aldgate. He wrote to us, ‘I was surprised that the Police did not do more to take names and addresses of those involved. They advised people to stay but most people, particul those not di on in my case, yet they would have had no contact from the Police or other organisations to see how they were doing’.63 Kirsty was evacuated from the sixth carriage of train 311, through the tunnel to King’s Cross station. Having arrived in King’s Cross station, she foun ‘There was a lot of police standing around. I think by this stage the road had even been closed. I have to say faces; some people were very distressed. There was not really a very proactive effort by the officers to come and approach people, see if people were alright, let alone take anybody’s details. I eventually, because it just felt like the right t to do, went and forced myself upon an officer and gave him my details. At th time, it was really only because I tho something someone might tell me’. Still nobody knew what had happened’.64 The NHS London Development Centre estimates that around 4,000 people were directly caught up in the 7 July attacks. This is based on police intelligence accounting for the numbers of commuters, witnesses, and people injured and those on duty responding to the events. The failure to collect contact details of survivors is perhaps reflected in the numbers of ‘victim statements’ taken by the Metropolitan Police in relation to each scene: Aldgate 203 Edgware Road 187 King’s Cross/Russell Square 175 Tavistock Square 381 A total of 946 injured people have given statements to the police - less tha ritten submission from the NHS London 39 62 Information about post-traumatic stress disorder can be found in the w Development Centre – see Volume 2, page 245 63 Written submission from Jonathan, Volume 3, page 2 64 Transcript of Committee meeting, 23 March 2006, Volume 3, page 29 73 of 151 5.20 the absence of an individual charged with the responsibility of collecting scenes, it seems that the collection of contact etails of survivors of the 7 July attacks was carried out in an unco-ordinated, 5.21 walked way from the trains and bus had significant implications for the care of July. 5.22 y . We discuss this rther in Section 9. 3 In addition to the failure systematically to collect the details of people who were 5.24 arol, who was severely injured in the King’s Cross/Russell Square explosion, was he was the Square, then re l Square had und . Despite aving given her name, and been recognised at Russell Square by a doctor she knew female’ was there, 5.25 Carol w ntial significance of this failure from the point of view of her family. ‘The point was I was resuscitated at the Tube station and then I was In details of survivors at the d piecemeal fashion, where it was carried out at all. It is understandable that the immediate priority for the emergency services personnel working at the scene is to tend to the most seriously injured. Nevertheless, the failure to collect and collate the details of those who a survivors in the weeks and months that followed 7 July. It will no doubt have hampered the efforts of those at the Casualty Bureau to establish who was involved in the incidents. It may also have had implications for the police investigation that followed 7 Given the numbers of people involved, and the difficulty of containing and directing survivors in the early stages of a complex emergency, some survivors will inevitably leave the scene without having any contact with the emergency services. For those people, communications via the media and other channels through the rest of the da and the following weeks is crucial, to advise people who were involved to contact the police and make them aware of the support services that are available fu 5.2 uninjured or suffered relatively minor injuries, there were some failings in the systems for tracking injured patients once they had been taken away to hospital. C conscious when a doctor came into the bombed carriage. She gave him her name. S n carried on a blanket out of the carriage, and along the tunnel. At Russell Carol saw a doctor she knew, who recognised her and called her name. She peatedly stated to a police officer, ‘I’m Carol, I am asthmatic’. Whilst at Russel station, Carol fell unconscious, and did not regain consciousness until after she ergone emergency surgery at University College London Hospital h personally, Carol’s name was not known at the hospital – she was recorded as ‘unknown
‘My name didn’t get through. Although my work hospital knew that I my family didn’t. My boyfriend trawled the streets and all through the hospitals trying to find me, and then did it again, and couldn’t find me … They didn’t find me until about eleven o’clock at night. By that point, I think they thought I was dead’.65 ent on to explain the pote 65 Transcript of interview with Carol, Volume 3, page 111 74 of 151 taken t hours, m Maybe not, but it would have been, “We have a Carol who is x age” or whatever, so it ould have been quicker to find me’.66 5.26 e the r his wife’s had been lost somewhere between the station and the hospital. As a result, Kathy’s husband waited for around two hours ame building just a few floors above but he couldn’t track me down because of this problem of losing my name. The engineer had gone to quite a lot of troub g across’. 5.27 Lynne w r Sammy Square her resc hospita was there, a re Sammy name not passed on to the hospital on 7 July so that she could have been identified 5.28 ys ral hours, and in some cases days, before families are notified of the wherea one. o hospital, but I could have died in hospital three hours later, and in that three y family could have been informed and they could have been there by then. w When Kathy was taken from the bombed carriage at Edgware Road, she gave her nam to a London Underground engineer, who called her husband from a payphone at station to tell him that she had been injured, and which hospital she was likely to be sent to. In giving her name, Kathy spelt it clearly as it is an unusual surname. By the time Kathy arrived at hospital, she was finding it difficult to speak because she had a collapsed lung. Kathy’s husband arrived at the hospital and began to look fo name. He could not find it, because her name before finally recognising a name on a list that bore a slight resemblance to theirs. Kathy said, ‘It was very frustrating for my husband and for me that there was this long delay when I was in the s le to try to find what my name was, and I had tried very hard to get the spellin 67 rote to tell us about the difficulties she encountered in tracing her son’s partne . Lynne’s son and his partner were both killed by the King’s Cross/Russell explosion. Sammy was conscious when she was rescued, and gave her name to uer before she died at Russell Square station. Lynne called around the London ls during the day trying to find Sammy. One hospital told her that Sammy nd then called back to say there had been a mistake. It was nine days befo ’s body was formally identified. Lynne raised the question, why was Sammy’s sooner and this mistake avoided? The London Ambulance Service has itself acknowledged that there was inadequate tracking of injured patients on 7 July. This problem causes unnecessary distress to the injured and their loved ones, and can result dela of seve bouts of their missing relative or loved 66 Transcript of interview with Carol, Volume 3, page 120 67 Transcript of interview with Kathy, Volume 3, page 79 75 of 151 Recommendations 31 to 33 We recommend that the Metropolitan Police Service establish protocols for ensuring that personal details are collected from survivors at the scene of a major incident. We request that the Metropolitan Police Service report back to us on what action it has taken by November 2006. We recommend that the London Ambulance Service review its mechanisms for finding out and recording the identity of seriously injured patients who are able to give their names and any other details at the scene of a major incident. We request that the London Ambulance Service come forward with possible solutions in time for our follow-up review in November 2006. We recommend that the London Resilience Forum coordinate a review across the emergency services of protocols for identifying survivors of major incidents and ensuring that their names, once taken, are passed on to the Casualty Bureau and receiving hospitals. 76 of 151 The First Hour – communication with wider public 6 77 of 151