No room for risk taking at level crossings

A series of new safety advertisements will run across regional cinemas and social media from this week, outlining the danger of irresponsible behaviour at level crossings.

Among the ads is one outlining, from a train driver’s perspective, what it is like to have to hit the emergency brakes.

“….you can’t swerve, you can’t do anything, the train will just stop when it stops,” the driver says

Member for the Dubbo electorate Dugald Saunders said the campaign was launched this week by the NSW Government in an effort to create a safer and stronger regional NSW.

“The message for our communities is simple. There are no excuses for putting lives on the line by trying to race a train – they can weigh up to 500 tonnes, travel very quickly and can take up to 14 football fields to stop,” Mr Saunders said.

“Despite the obvious dangers, the prospect of a $464 fine and the loss of three demerit points, we are still seeing too many near misses at level crossings”.

“We have flashing lights, boom gates and road markings at level crossings for good reason, and drivers, riders and pedestrians need to pay attention, take extreme care and watch out for trains.”

Between 2005 and 2020 there were 32 crashes involving a train and vehicle at level crossings across NSW resulting in nine fatalities and 11 serious injuries.

Whether it’s a freight or a passenger train the majority of all level crossing close calls occur in regional areas, and the difference between a near miss and a fatal collision is sometimes just a matter of seconds.

For information on the location of level crossings in your area visit: https://www.transport.nsw.gov.au/projects/programs/level-crossing-safety/level-crossing-finder

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