The Government has failed to implement recommendations made in the wake of the July 7 inquests, and passengers on the London Underground are still unable to “find a plaster on the Tube”, a lawyer has said.
Clifford Tibber, who represented the relatives of seven people killed in the atrocity, said there was “precious little” evidence of any significant change more than six months after the inquests concluded.
He said Londoners must wonder whether the city was any better equipped to respond to an attack than it was in 2005 – the year four suicide bombers detonated explosives on the transport network, murdering 52 innocent people.
Bereaved relatives have also voiced concerns over the country’s capacity to deal with another attack of similar magnitude – despite the five-month investigation. Their comments came as Britain prepares to welcome millions of people to the capital for next year’s Olympic Games.
“The families were united in trying to ensure that any past failings should be remedied,” Mr Tibber said.
“There has been precious little evidence of any major changes and most Londoners must be wondering if the emergency services can respond any quicker than they did in 2005.
“What has happened, for example, to publicly accessible first aid kits on Underground trains, blue light status for London Underground’s emergency response vehicles and public funding for the London Air Ambulance Service?”
At the conclusion of the long-awaited inquest into the 52 deaths, coroner Lady Justice Hallett set out nine recommendations proposing a series of changes to intelligence and emergency procedures which she hoped “may save lives” in the future.
These included the suggestions that more first aid equipment should be kept on London Underground trains; that hospital staff and paramedics should examine how they handle major incidents; and that the funding and capabilities of the London Air Ambulance should be reviewed.
She cautioned against allowing the recommendations to “lie on a shelf for 15 years”.
The organisations in question insist they have reviewed procedures and say many recommendations are already in place or in the final stages.
Suicide bombers Mohammed Sidique Khan, 30; Shehzad Tanweer, 22; Hasib Hussain, 18; and Jermaine Lindsay, 19; carried out the worst single terror attack on British soil during morning rush hour on July 7 2005. They unleashed carnage on three Tube trains and a bus.