Police get tough on rail offenders

POLICE on the Coffs Coast are cracking down on risky behaviour around rail crossings.

The blitz, part of a statewide operation, coincides with National Rail Safety Week which ends next Sunday.

Trains were involved in 881 near misses with vehicles and pedestrians at level crossings across the nation last year.

“It’s so important motorists stick to the rules – making sure they stop at level crossings and not queue across tracks – because doing the wrong thing has the potential to end in disaster,” said Traffic Services Commander, Assistant Commissioner John Hartley.

“There are around 3000 railway crossings across the state and numerous near misses a month.

“This campaign is about changing driver behaviour around level crossings through education and enforcement.”

Meanwhile, police are reminding the public about the dangers of entering rail corridors. Officers have caught 1579 trespassers in rail corridors across the state in the past 18 months.

“Walking along or running across a running railway line is both stupid and dangerous,” Mr Hartley said.

“If you are hit by a train you’ll most likely be killed.

“While taking a short cut by running across train tracks might save you a few seconds, not doing so could save your life.”

Each year rail operators, track owners and government agencies, including the NSW Police Force, come together for National Rail Safety Week to educate the community.

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