'Friendly, genuine' teenager named among victims of Croydon tram crash

Credit: PA
  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Paul Davies

A teenager described as a "friendly, genuine lad" has been named among the seven people killed when a tram derailed in Croydon.

Dane Chinnery, 19, was among those who died in the morning rush hour crash.

The driver of the tram, a 42-year-old man from Beckenham, has been bailed by police amid suggestions it failed to brake before taking a corner at speed.

British Transport Police said six men and one women died in the incident.

Investigators said the vehicle was travelling at a "significantly higher speed than is permitted" and are probing whether the driver had fallen asleep.

More than 50 people were injured when the tram left the track and flipped on its side.

Tom Dale, 20, was on the tram travelling to work with his old school friend Mr Chinnery when the vehicle derailed.

Mr Dale said that after the tram crashed he was looking for his friend, and asking, "Where's Dane? Where's Dane?", but all he could see was Mr Chinnery's boot where he had been sitting.

"It was like walking out of a war zone," the chef said after the tram crashed while travelling from New Addington to Wimbledon via Croydon.

Mr Dale, who was badly bruised, said of Mr Chinnery: "He was just a friendly, genuine lad, did no harm to nobody really. No one deserves for this to happen to them."

Mr Chinnery was reported to be a Crystal Palace fan and there were calls for a minute's silence to be held during in his honour during the 19th minute of the team's November 19 match against Manchester City.

In a statement the team today said: "Everyone at Crystal Palace Football Club was shocked and saddened to hear about the tragic tram accident on Wednesday morning.

"The chairman, manager, players and staff would like to offer their sincere condolences to the families of those who lost their lives.

Whilst information is still being clarified, we understand that at least one of the victims, 19 year-old Dane Chinnery, was a Palace fan.

"Our prayers are with his family and with all the friends and relatives of those victims that have been affected.

"The club wishes a full and speedy recovery to the many people who suffered injuries.

"This was a terrible event in the heart of Croydon and we stand with the community at this difficult time."

Friends of Mr Chinnery took to social media to pay tribute to him: