30 Jul 2014

Train drivers back safety campaign

11:30 am on 30 July 2014

Train drivers who have been involved in fatal level-crossing accidents hope a safety campaign starting next month will help reduce the growing number of crashes, their union says.

Figures from the Transport Agency show 10 crashes, leading to four fatalities and six injuries, have occurred this year, whereas no fatalities occurred between 2010 and 2013.

The chairperson of the Otago branch of the Rail and Maritime Transport Union, Brian McKay, said close calls happened at rail crossings every day.

"Cars are going through the alarms before they are finished and, at uncontrolled crossings, cars are going across the railway lines without the drivers even looking."

The TrackSafe Foundation is surveying train drivers to find out the country's worst crossings, so it can run an awareness campaign for motorists.