Hun­dreds in train near-misses

The Observer - - NEWS -

AN alarm­ing num­ber of mo­torists and pedes­tri­ans have nar­rowly avoided be­ing hit by trains in 2017-18, with a 33 per cent in­crease in near-misses recorded.

New fig­ures re­leased by the State Govern­ment last week re­veal 248 mo­torists ex­pe­ri­enced a near miss be­tween their ve­hi­cle or them­selves and a train as a re­sult of dis­obey­ing warn­ing signs, up from 127 in­ci­dents the pre­vi­ous fi­nan­cial year.

Trans­port Min­is­ter Mark Bai­ley, along with Queens­land Rail, will launch a new level cross­ing safety cam­paign called Heavy Metal to re­mind Queens­lan­ders of the risk they face by ig­nor­ing the warn­ings.

The cam­paign comes less than a month af­ter for­mer MP Leanne Don­ald­son col­lided with a cane train near Bund­aberg. Ms Don­ald­son is still re­cov­er­ing in hos­pi­tal. Mr Bai­ley said while the $100,000 cam­paign had noth­ing to do with Ms Don­ald­son’s ac­ci­dent, it did re­it­er­ate the im­por­tance of safety. Train driver Peter Co­hen, who’s been driv­ing for al­most 20 years, said more trains were run­ning than ever be­fore.

“Once you’re in the road of us the train can’t stop in time,” he said. “The only thing that the train can do is go through you.”

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