‘Miracle he survived’

Court news
Court news

A court has been told how a man ‘miraculously survived’ after he was run over by a train at Belper railway station.

Derby magistrates were told farm worker Stephen Richardson had been drinking all afternoon in Belper town centre on Saturday, June 14, when he stumbled on to the line.

A train driver spotted him lying in the middle of the tracks but was unable to brake in time and thought he had killed 41-year-old Richardson, the court was told.

However, Richardson was spotted staggering back to the platform unharmed shortly afterwards covered in grease marks on his face and tee-shirt.

Now, Richardson who lives in Willersley Lane, Cromford, has admitted causing an obstruction on the railway, which caused services to be delayed by up to 79 minutes – costing the railway industry nearly £14,000.

Prosecutor Fiona Brooks, told magistrates at a hearing in Derby on Tuesday: “Miraculously for him (Richardson) he was completely unharmed. After the train had passed over him he got up and was able to make his way back to the platform.

“The driver was clearly shocked and concerned but he knew the train would not be able to come to a stop for three-quarters of a mile. He actually believed he had hit someone. He said he honestly thought someone had been killed.

“The defendant stated when he was subsequently spoken to by the police that he was in a drunken state. He didn’t recall going on to the tracks because of the amount of alcohol he consumed in the afternoon in the town centre.”

Richardson was given unconditional bail to appear before the court again on July 22 for sentencing.

He told the court: “It was a terribly stupid thing to have happened and I just want to apologise to anyone it could have 

Chairman of the Bench, Guy Wildgoose, said: “We can’t get away from the fact more than £13,900 was lost to the railway, let alone the cost to the people delayed at the scene. The driver thought he killed you and we don’t know what effect that could have had.”