The RailStaff Awards 2023

Laura Main

Said the following about Tottenham Overhead Line Equipment (OLE) team:

“The Tottenham overhead line equipment (OLE) team are being nominated for this award due to their outstanding response and dedication to rectify a significant overhead line de-wirement.

On 26th July 2018, late on a Thursday evening, a significant overhead line de-wirement occurred at Stamford Hill station. There was around 1km of damage with most equipment beyond repair and laying on the floor. The area of damage included a particularly challenging arrangement with overlaps and reverse curves meaning that high radial loads were present. The equipment type was of an obsolete design so parts were scarce and it therefore required an on-the-spot renewal.

This is the largest incident that the team have had to deal with for at least 7 years and saw staff volunteering to work 12 hour rotating shifts, come in to help on rest days and even return early from holiday to assist. Staff on site were so dedicated to getting the repairs completed that several had to be sent home due to fatigue.

The repair work was significantly beyond the capacity of the maintenance organisation, but due to the team's efforts and leadership of the assistance provided by Romford Delivery unit and the Works Delivery team, the railway was returned to full operation for the Monday morning peak.

The team did not shy away from the incident despite the scale and indeed saw them all go far beyond what they were contracted or even expected to do. Indeed, when the electrification and plant maintenance engineer took over the management of the incident on the Friday, he personally experienced the challenge of getting staff to go home and rest when all they wanted to do was stay and help.“