Director asks for apology over Spa cliff lift incident which left one person injured

A conference director who was caught up in last year’s cliff lift incident at the Spa is still waiting for an apology from those responsible.

Saturday, 2nd November 2019, 1:50 pm
Rotary Director Martyn Bye was caught up in last year's incident.

Martyn Bye organises the Rotary District 1220 Conference held annually at the Spa.

Last year, while visiting Scarborough, he was one of 15 people on board a carriage which came to a hard landing on October 5.

He said: “It was a Friday night and it was raining. Me and a group of delegates were going down to the Spa for an evening of entertainment when suddenly the lift stopped. The operator had to get out to the control box and all of a sudden [the carriage] went up at full speed and crashed. We all fell to one side.”

As a result of the incident, which led to a passenger being injured, an investigation was launched and an improvement notice was issued to Scarborough Borough Council, which owns the cliff lift, on behalf of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

This revealed that a similar incident caused by water entering the main control panel had happened just a few weeks earlier and that Scarborough Council “failed to have the lift thoroughly examined before putting it back into use”.

In light of the notice, Mr Bye is now asking for an apology, claiming that last year’s incident has had an impact on the number of those attending this year’s conference.

A spokesperson from the council said: “The repair and improvement work we commissioned on the lift after the incident included acting on the improvement notice recommendations issued to us by the HSE. The HSE also made recommendations to the operator of the cliff lift, SIV.

“Since the cliff lift reopened in mid-April, it has been running well and we continue to work closely with SIV to monitor its operation.

“Looking at one extract from the HSE’s improvement notice does not convey the full facts of their investigation and should not be used in isolation to apportion liability. The matter is currently in the hands of the council’s and SIV’s insurers.”