The trackSAFE Foundation welcomed the announcement on 23 July by the Victorian Coalition Government to expedite the removal of the level crossing at Main Rd, St Albans —named by train drivers as one of the top 10 worst level crossings in Victoria.
TrackSAFE Board Director and Australasian Railway Association (ARA) CEO Mr Bryan Nye welcomed the announcement pointing out just how dangerous this crossing was and the importance of having it removed.
“We are very pleased to hear that Main Rd, St Albans has been fast tracked for removal by the end of the year. This level crossing has had fatalities, serious injuries and many near collisions and is one of great concern amongst train drivers,” said Mr Nye.
In 2013 TrackSAFE went out to train drivers to ask them which level crossing they thought were the worst in each State with Main Road, St Albans, Aerodrome Road, Avenel and Cherry St, Werribee just three of the listed Top 10 in Victoria. Most level crossings made the list due to records of near collisions, heavy vehicle frequency and sighting distance.
“There are thousands of near collisions between vehicles and trains at level crossing every year and each one is just seconds way from becoming a potential disaster. The Victorian Government must be congratulated on their proactive approach to level crossing safety” Mr Nye continued.
“Level crossing safety remains one of the rail industry’s highest safety priorities, establishing TrackSAFE in March 2012 to try to do more to address the issue of level crossing safety.
“Since then TrackSAFE has implemented a number of programs aimed at increasing education and awareness around the importance of rail safety and the trauma caused to rail employees from incidents on the network.
“Our most recent is an Australian first rail safety education initiative called ‘Be on the Safe Side’, bringing the important message of rail safety into Australian primary and high school classrooms,” Mr Nye concluded.
For more information on Be on the Safe Side or to download resources free of charge from the teacher’s website, visit www.tracksafeeducation.com.au. There are also helpful resources for parents and community members, and tips for rail staff about school visits.