Rail Bosses Call For Crossing Action

RAIL bosses in East Anglia have called on the Government to do more to tackle dangerous driving by motorists at the region s level crossings. Network Rail chief Ian Coucher, said that thousands of lives were being put at risk by dangerous drivers who wer

RAIL bosses in East Anglia have called on the Government to do more to tackle dangerous driving by motorists at the region's level crossings.

Network Rail chief Ian Coucher, said that thousands of lives were being put at risk by dangerous drivers who were trying to save a few minutes by dodging around barriers or running red lights as trains approached.

Mr Coucher is pushing the Government to introduce a compulsory section on level crossings in driving theory tests in a bid to stamp out a reckless driving behaviour by some motorists in the region.

"Motorists are too often playing Russian roulette with a 200 tonne train - and tragically some lose their lives gambling at level crossings by running red lights or dodging around barriers, Mr Coucher said.


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"I'm confident that lives will be saved if motorists learn how to safely use level crossings from the day they pass their test. Our campaign is raising awareness of the very real dangers of running the risk but we think more can be done to change motorists' behaviour."

Around 95% of incidents at level crossings are down to motorist or pedestrian misuse or error, according to statistics and in East Anglia last year there were 393 reported incidents of misuse of at level crossings and 27 near misses.

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Pedestrians were also urged to take more care at crossings after statistics revealed that 43 people came perilously close to being hit by one of the region's trains last year.

UK statistics for 2009

3,244 recorded incidents of misuse or error

14 collisions between vehicles and trains

13 deaths

140 near misses between motor vehicles and trains

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