Shocking incidents at Seamer level crossing as people cross in front of oncoming trains
Network Rail has slammed the dangerous and reckless behaviour of some level crossing users in Scarborough following a near miss and two shocking deliberate misuse incidents in the last six months.
Since June, pedestrians, cyclists and a quad biker have ignored the warning signs at Meads Lane level crossing in Seamer and crossed as a train was approaching.
The latest incident took place on Sunday October 4, when a TransPennine Express train driver reported two adults and three children crossing the tracks just 90 metres in front of their train.
This follows on from a near miss incident in September, when a man was riding a quad bike over the crossing, and another incident back in June when a train driver had to apply their emergency brake as two teenagers with bicycles crossed in front of a train.
Pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders can all legally use Meads Lane level crossing, however there is no public access for vehicle users.
More people have been using the crossing, which is on the York to Scarborough line, since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ahead of the second national lockdown, which begins on Thursday, Network Rail is urging all level crossing users to pay attention and to follow all the safety and warning signs at the crossing.
Robert Havercroft, Level Crossing Manager for Network Rail, said: “It’s really concerning that once again, we have to warn people of the dangers posed by ignoring warnings and signs at level crossings.
“We’ve seen more people using this crossing during the Covid-19 pandemic, and with a second national lockdown beginning on Thursday, we need the community to take notice of this warning and use level crossings responsibly - there’s no excuse not to.”
Paul Watson, Operations Director for TransPennine Express, said: “It is incredibly worrying that people have been misusing Meads Lane Level crossing and putting their lives and the welfare of our colleagues in danger.
“As you can imagine, our trains travel at very high speeds and it is easy to misjudge just how quickly they approach. Once an obstruction is sighted, they cannot move out of the way and even under emergency braking take a considerable distance to stop. It is crucial that people use level crossings safely by paying attention and following the guidance accordingly.”
This new warning comes just two weeks after Network Rail released a startling photograph showing a couple recklessly having wedding photographs taken on a level crossing on another railway line near Whitby.
People can find out more about Network Rail’s safety campaign ‘bossing the crossing’ at: https://www.networkrail.co.uk/communities/safety-in-the-community/railway-safety-campaigns/bossing-the-crossing-our-pedestrian-safety-campaign/