Stonehaven train driver's wife in heartfelt response to claims husband was at fault

Heartbroken wife says train driver husband was not at fault for derailment
Brett McCullough, Donald Dinne and Chris Stuchbury were killed in the crash.Brett McCullough, Donald Dinne and Chris Stuchbury were killed in the crash.
Brett McCullough, Donald Dinne and Chris Stuchbury were killed in the crash.

The heartbroken widow of a train driver who lost his life in last week’s Stonehaven tragedy has responded to suggestions that her husband was at fault for the derailment which left two others dead.

Driver Brett McCullough, 45, died along with conductor Donald Dinnie, 58, and passenger Christopher Stuchbury in the accident which occurred near Stonehaven during heavy rain last week. Six others were injured.

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All six vehicles of the train were derailed when it struck a landslip around a mile-and-a-half of Carmont in Aberdeenshire.

An official report from the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) said the train was travelling within “the maximum permitted” speed of 75mph at the time of the incident.

Further information from the RAIB revealed the train had reached 72.8mph. After being derailed, the train continued for around 70 metres before hitting the parapet of a bridge.

On Friday evening, Mr McCullough’s bereaved wife, Stephanie, made an impassioned post social media in response to suggestions in the media her “beautiful kind” husband was at fault for the 12 August tragedy.

Pointing to official information released by the RAIB, Mrs McCullough said it was wholly unfair that Brett should be blamed for causing the accident as he had not been exceeding the line speed limit and had done precisely what he had been told to by rail operators.

She wrote: “I thought I had to post this because of the recent posts on various news channels implying my lovely husband was at fault."He was told it was good to proceed at line speed that was 75mph, he was under that.

“Brett did what he was told we know this because the “black box” recorded Brett’s speed that was under the speed limit and the communications between Scotrail and Brett record everything.

“I can’t stand people implying that my beautiful kind husband was to blame. He did everything he was told to do. I can assure you Brett loved his job and did everything by the book.

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"Nobody should go to work and not come home. I have 3 heartbroken children here who Brett adored. His family was his world and he cared so much about people. Nobody can say a bad word about my kind gentle husband.”

A full investigation into the incident is being carried out by the RAIB, with a separate probe being conducted by the rail industry.

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