Risking it at rail crossings is not on: RACQ

RACQ has urged Queenslanders to take safety at rail level crossings seriously, after the alarming number of near-misses with pedestrians and motorists was revealed.

The Cairns Post reported there were seven collisions and 211 near-misses on level crossings across the State in the 2019-20 financial year.

RACQ spokesperson Lauren Ritchie said there was no excuse for failing to stop at rail crossings.

“Level rail crossings are incredibly dangerous locations, especially if drivers and pedestrians aren’t following the warning signs, sounds or flashing lights,” Ms Ritchie said.

“Trains travel at high speeds and take a long time to stop, so taking a risk to save you a few extra minutes behind the wheel could be deadly. 

“If you break the law by obstructing a crossing or disobeying warning lights, you could also be facing a fine of up to $1067 and up to four demerit points. The message is simple, be patient and wait for the train to pass.”

Ms Ritchie said the Club also called for all levels of government to work together to develop and fund an ongoing railway level crossing upgrade program to reduce congestion and improve safety for commuters, motorists and residents.

“It’s crucial all levels of government commit to an ongoing railway level crossing upgrade to improve safety and reduce congestion at level crossings, so we see benefits for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.

“These improvements can include removing the level crossing and constructing a grade separated overpass and installation of other warning treatments such as vehicle and pedestrian boom gates and flashing lights.”