December 8 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
A cyclist, who ignored red warning lights and a safety barrier, came within seconds of being hit by the 1812 Greater Anglia Cambridge to Norwich train.
The train driver had to apply the emergency break before the cyclist stepped back, narrowly avoiding being struck
Richard Schofield, Network Rail route managing director, said: “This is one of the closest incidents of near miss we’ve seen.”
British Transport Police has put the cyclist on their ‘most wanted’ list and issued CCTV images – and film footage- of the incident at a Cambridgeshire crossing.
PC Matt Mildinhall of British Transport Police, said: “The footage shows a woman approach the crossing around 6.30pm as the barriers are down.
“She passes through the barriers and onto the line before breaking hard, just seconds before a train passes through.”
He added: “This woman simply put her life on the line by not only ignoring the warning lights but went through the barriers and onto the line.”
Jay Thompson Greater Anglia’s head of safety said: “The train driver reacted very quickly when he spotted the cyclist and took all necessary action in responding to this incident.
“Not only was this incident very traumatic for the driver, but it could have resulted in the cyclist being killed. It is really important that everyone follows the safety instructions at level crossings.”
British Transport Police said they have released the footage of the incident, which took place at Waterbeach level crossing on Thursday September 12, in a bid to identify the woman and highlight the dangers of misusing level crossings.
Over 100 trains a day travel through Waterbeach level crossing, reaching speeds of up to 75mph.
Mr Schofield said: “The person using the crossing not only didn’t hear the train but ignored the warning lights and barriers, putting her life, the lives of passengers and the train driver in danger.
“Warning systems at level crossings are there for a reason, to protect users from the railway. I hope the release of this footage will highlight the importance of following the safety advice at level crossings.”
PC Mildinhall said he was “very keen to speak to the cyclist about the incident and explain the danger she not only put herself in but others around the crossing at the time.”
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40 quoting background reference B8/LNA of 25/09/2013.