The Rail Accident Investigation Bureau (RAIB) probing the fatal Croydon tram crash have said the driver “lost awareness” before the accident.
The tram – which was travelling from New Addington to Wimbledon – derailed on 9 November last year killing seven people and injuring another 51.
A report by the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) says: “The late application of the brakes, and the absence of emergency braking, suggests that the driver had lost awareness that he was approaching the tight, left-hand curve.”
The report highlights that the speed limit sign would be visible to drivers only at a distance of 60-90 metres with headlights on. The tram was running in darkness in early morning amid heavy rain.
Investigators are also looking into whether lives could have been saved if the tram had been fitted with shatterproof safety glass, which is a requirement on all passenger trains.
Additional speed restrictions and signage have been introduced following the accident.
The tram’s driver, Alfred Dorris, 42, was arrested at the scene and was questioned on suspicion of manslaughter.
Mr. Dorris from Beckenham, south London, has been bailed until May.
A full accident report is expected to be published later this year.