THE FOSTER mother of Bulwell tram tragedy teenager Lindsey Inger says she suffered horrific flashbacks after a man died at the same tram and train crossing at the weekend.
Painful memories came flooding back for Marlene Starling (67) after police were called to the notorious death spot near the Hucknall and Bulwell boundary on Saturday afternoon.
A British Transport Police spokesman confirmed a man from Mansfield was hit by the 12.47pm Mansfield to Nottingham service after the driver saw him and sounded the horn but couldn’t stop in time. The 47-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.
Although it is being treated as non-suspicious, the death is the fourth in five years at the crossing. Thirteen-year-old Lindsey was killed by a tram last November, whilst Hucknall woman Jean Hoggart and her grandson Mikey Dawson died in November 2008 when they were struck by a train at the same fatal spot.
Marlene, who fostered Lindsey from the age of six months, says she hurried to Saturday’s scene as soon as she heard the news.
“I got a phone call from my foster daughter Mandy asking what was happening at Lindsey’s spot as it was taped off with police everywhere,” she said. “We dropped everything and flew down there. Every single memory came flooding back. It was horrific.
“I haven’t been the same since. I’m reliving everything again. I can’t sleep. It’s not even been eleven weeks since Lindsey’s death and now someone else has died there. These are all memories I just don’t want to have. We’ve not even had the inquest yet, so there’s still the pain of that to go through. It’s all just too much.”
Marlene and her family have been campaigning since Lindsey’s death for improved safety measures at the site. Saturday’s death comes just a fortnight after she told the Dispatch she’d like to see the crossing closed altogether to prevent further tragedy until a proposed elevated footbridge is in place.
She added: “The crossing should have been closed after Lindsey died. Others died there before her, too. It’s still all taped up and closed for now. We’re really hoping it stays that way.”
Efforts have been made in recent weeks to speed up the implementation of an elevated footbridge over the crossing, which is expected to cost in excess of £1 million, with Sherwood MP Mark Spencer pushing for the project to move forward at pace.
He said: “I don’t think this death will in any way speed up the process. I’m hoping past tragedies will ensure a bridge is in place as quickly as is deliverable. Whilst it is very sad, others who have lost their lives accidentially are much more of a priority.”
Bridge plans are currently being drawn up, with construction work due to start later in the year. Pedestrian-triggered flashing warning lights are to be installed shortly at each end of the crossing, where they will remain until the bridge is in use.