Uniting workers and communities in the London Borough of Camden
The fire which began on the wooden Piccadilly line escalator on 18th October 1987 killed 31 people. Watch BBC footage from 1987.
The public enquiry the following year lead to resignations of the senior management of both London Underground and London Regional Transport. Wooden panelling was removed from escalators, heat detectors and sprinklers were fitted beneath escalators, the radio communication system was improved and station staff emergency training was improved.
The Fire Precautions (Sub-surface Railway Stations) Regulations 1989 were introduced. Smoking was banned in all London Underground stations, including on the escalators and eventually all wooden escalators in sub-surface Underground stations were replaced with metal ones. See investigation into the causes of the 1987 Kings Cross Fire and wikipedia on King’s Cross fire.
RMT will be demonstrating outside Kings Cross station on Sunday 18th November at 11.00 to commemorate the fire and to highlight the continued need for a fully staffed and safe tube network.
This demonstration is especially important in light of the LUL documents which have been seen by RMT, which plan an unattended network including automated trains and would necessitate the ripping up of the safety regulations, including minimum staffing levels, which came about in response to the tragedy. More on RMT memorial event here.