Level crossing risks highlighted

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Published: Monday 2nd February 2015 by The News Editor

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Frightening footage of level crossing users dicing with death has been released by British Transport Police (BTP).

In one video clip, a pedestrian at Dalcross near Inverness in Scotland casually walks around an in-position half-barrier crossing, reaching safety fractionally before a train comes through.

Another clip shows a barrier coming down and knocking a cyclist off his bike after he had ignored a warning light at Spondon in Derbyshire.

A third piece of footage shows a driver at Narborough in Leicestershire finding herself on the rail track after the barriers had come down and going backwards and forwards to get to safety.

None of those involved in the incidents were hurt, but the Leicestershire driver was fined £135 and given six penalty points on her licence.

The release of the clips coincides with a week-long, Scotland-wide awareness campaign Operation Look which is launched today by BTP and Network Rail (NR).

BTP Inspector Becky Warren said: “All too often people get into the habit of taking risks at crossings and our message is simple. Use crossings safely.

“It may be tempting to jump a light to shave a minute or two off your journey, but every time you do, you endanger your life and the lives of other road and rail users. Fail to obey the signals and you may also end up with a driving ban or a criminal record. Is it really worth the risk?”

Darren Furness, head of level crossings for NR, said: “Level crossings create a risk for people that we want to remove. Where possible we close them, and we have already closed more than 900 in the past five years.”

In 2005 Olivia Bazlinton, 14, and her friend Charlotte Thompson, were killed when struck by a train at a crossing at Elsenham in Essex.

Olivia’s mother Tina Hughes, who is NR’s level crossing champion, said: “I am delighted to see this nationwide week of action.”

Published: Monday 2nd February 2015 by The News Editor

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