13 Jan 2011

Fatal level crossing to be upgraded

12:45 pm on 13 January 2011

KiwiRail plans to bring forward a level crossing upgrade in Taranaki following a fatal collision between a goods train and a ute.

One person died in the incident on Wednesday at Flint Road in Statford and two others were injured.

KiwiRail says the level crossing was already on the list to be upgraded within five years. About eight crossings per year are upgraded.

But acting chief executive Lloyd Major says that upgrade is now likely to be done in the next two years.

About half of the 1400 level crossings nationwide are without any flashing lights, bells or barrier arms.

Dead woman named

The dead woman has been named as Antoinette Hess, 48.

Police say her brother, 63, has undergone surgery, and her daughter, aged eight, is in intensive care at Taranaki base hospital.