Driv­ers warned about rail line safety

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Your -

PO­LICE swooped at a no­to­ri­ous level cross­ing to warn driv­ers of the con­se­quences of ig­nor­ing red lights and bar­ri­ers.

Bri­tish Trans­port Po­lice (BTP) of­fi­cers wear­ing high-vis­i­bil­ity jack­ets tar­geted Help­ston level cross­ing yes­ter­day, which sees up to 15 driv­ers a week risk their lives by break­ing the law.

Po­lice spoke to mo­torists and pedes­tri­ans about the dangers and of­fered ad­vice on how to stay safe on the rail­way. Scores of leaflets were also handed out , which posed the ques­tion: “Would it kill you to wait?”

The op­er­a­tion was part of In­ter­na­tional Level Cross­ing Aware­ness Day and also saw Net­work Rail get in­volved.

No driv­ers were caught flout­ing the rules at Help­ston yes­ter­day.

BTP Sergeant Mark Brown said sav­ing a few min­utes by dart­ing through red lights was not worth the risk.

He added: “Al­though it’s frus­trat­ing to wait, it’s not worth tak­ing that chance.

“We get around 10 to 15 re­ports a week at Help­ston of peo­ple go­ing through the red lights and hit­ting bar­ri­ers and we in­ves­ti­gate ev­ery sin­gle one. Trains travel at high speed and with huge mo­men­tum - they can­not swerve to avoid ob­sta­cles on the line.

“For that rea­son I would urge that driv­ers are mind­ful that they do not to risk en­dan­ger­ing their lives, or the lives of oth­ers.”

As part of the aware­ness day, Net­work Rail and BTP or­gan­ised events cross the coun­try.

Martin Gal­lagher, Net­work Rail’s head of com­mu­nity safety said: “We have a good safety record in com­par­i­son to many other coun­tries but even one death is one too many.

“Jump­ing the lights and ig­nor­ing warn­ing signs is sadly a sight we see all too of­ten.

“Level cross­ings are safe, but if mis­used, they all pose very real risks.”

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