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Safety review calls after third West Midlands Metro crash in four months

By Jordan Reynolds | Wolverhampton | Transport | Published: | Last Updated:

Calls have been made for a safety review after a car crash involving a West Midlands Metro tram in the third incident of its kind in four months.

Firefighters had to cut the roof off the car to free the driver

A woman had to be cut from her car in the crash near the Bilston Street Island in Wolverhampton.

Four people from the tram were also treated by paramedics has sparked calls for a review of safety measures.

Police cordoned off the island while engineers worked long into the evening to remove the stricken tram.

Motorists faced delays around Wolverhampton Ring Road at St Davids with thousands of fans arriving for last night's Wolves match at Molineux against Manchester United.

Traffic queued on routes including Birmingham New Road.

The car overturned during rush hour yesterday morning and the driver was taken to hospital but is not thought to be seriously injured, West Midlands Ambulance Service said.

Four people from the tram, including the driver, were treated and discharged at the scene.

Three crews with 15 firefighters were sent to the scene to make the vehicle safe and cut the woman from her car.

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The tram, which is dedicated to football legend Cyrille Regis and was carrying 25 people at the time, was knocked off the tracks as it crossed the roundabout heading towards the A41 Bilston Road.

It was left with major damage to its front end and to the side of the first carriage.

Just two months ago a crash between a tram and a lorry shut off transport services in the city centre.

Engineers worked long into the evening to remove the stricken tram

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The first two West Midlands Metro stops in Wolverhampton were closed for around an hour due to the crash on June 21 and one person was treated for shock.

And on May 21 a car and a tram collided on the A41 Bilston Road near the turning for Dunelm and B&M Home Store car parks.

Parmender Kumar, 47, of Bilston, was behind the wheel of the car and said he stalled on the tram lines in his Dacia as he was turning out of the Dunelm car park at around 7pm.

Now Councillor Wendy Thompson, opposition leader, has called for reports of each incident to be reviewed and mitigating measures to be carried out.

She said: "They need to look at the reports from each of the incidents including this one and they need to see if there are any common factors and if there are there, they need to put in some mitigation to put a stop to it and make it safer.

"People can be very seriously injured and I think someone might have been killed in the past.

"It's a really important matter where we've got tram lines mixing with traffic, there needs to be every kind of precaution.

"I know when I drive I'm very wary of a tram that might be coming along, you have to be extra alert and sometimes even that might not be enough.

"What is strange about this is it's three accidents close together.

"Anything needs to be done to cut down the number of serious accidents.

"They need to see if there are any common factors, it's absolutely essential as they have happened in such a short space of time, especially this one on such a busy road."

A spokesman for West Midlands Metro said: “We cannot comment on this specific incident as enquiries are ongoing, however safety is always our number one priority.

“To ensure the safety of on-street sections of the network we work closely with the police and highways authority and, fortunately, collisions involving trams are relatively uncommon."

Jordan Reynolds

By Jordan Reynolds
Reporter - @jreynolds_star

Senior reporter at the Express & Star.

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