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25 March 2011, 06:13
British Transport Police (BTP) officers have today released footage of a man risking his life running through a level crossing – seconds before a fast travelling train passes through missing him by inches.
The pictures were taken in the early hours of Sunday, 13 March in Long Eaton, Nottingham.
The man is caught on camera running across the line as the crossing barriers come down. While his friends wait on the other side, the man runs back across to meet them, only seconds before a fast travelling train runs through the area.
Today, British Transport Police and Network Rail have sent a warning to drivers and pedestrians of the risks of misusing level crossings.
Sergeant Rob Bowley said: “The risks taken by people at this – and other crossings – are simply unbelievable. In this instance on Station Street, Long Eaton, the man has not only crossed the line whilst barriers were coming down, but he was also jumped back across narrowly missing being hit by the train.
“What is even more shocking is that the crossing has a staircase which runs over the track, allowing pedestrians to safely cross the track whilst the barriers are down. This is not only hugely dangerous and irresponsible, but it could have had fatal consequences."
Assisted by BTP, Network Rail is currently carrying out a national campaign in an effort to raise safety at railway level crossings in Britain. Safety teams carry out a number of education events at crossings and officers from BTP have supported these events with a series of enforcement operations.
Sgt Bowley added: “Education is key to everything we do around level crossings. By informing people of the potential dangers of misusing crossings – and how to use them safely we aim to reduce incidents at these sites.
“We are working closely with Network Rail to improve knowledge and take action against anyone who continues to misuse crossings. Those who flout the law and ignore the crossing signs can expect action to be taken against them. Anyone who is willing to disregard the law and place themselves and others in danger should be in no doubt that if caught doing so, they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Richard Pedley, community safety manager for Network Rail, added: “A few centimetres difference and this could be an entirely different story. Re entering a crossing once the barriers are down is extremely reckless. The train driver involved must have had an awful shock and the pedestrian was lucky to escape with his life.
“I hope these pictures help to remind people that crossing barriers and warning lights are there to protect your safety, and to use crossings properly.”