UK - Railtrack Urged to Improve Barriers at Level Crossing : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

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Title: Railtrack Urged to Improve Barriers at Level Crossing

April 25, 2000 THE JOURNAL WORRIED councillors will this week call for improved barrier safety at a level crossing where a father and his young son were almost killed in an accident.

Railtrack is to be urged to provide full width, deep skirted safety barriers at the unmanned crossing in Seghill, Northumberland, in the wake of the accident in which a car was struck by a train.

Councillors in Blyth Valley say the time is now right to carry out the work in anticipation of the crossing becoming even busier when regular passenger trains are reintroduced on the Blyth and Tyne railway line.

Syed Ahmed, 44, and his son Ali, six, of nearby Seaton Delaval were seriously injured when their car was hit by a train on the crossing last month.

It is believed the safety barriers were up after being struck by a preceding car. Railtrack claimed last week that tests by engineers had revealed the crossing was in full working order when the accident happened.

The call for Railtrack to install new barriers to replace the existing staggered single barriers, which cover only half the width of the road, is being made by Seghill councillor Michael Richardson.

Yesterday he said: "It may well be that this accident was caused by another car jumping a red light and causing the barriers to retract but people are concerned that the existing barriers are inadequate to stop careless drivers and young children nipping between them.

"What is needed are full width, deep skirted barriers, especially as rail traffic will increase greatly if the plans for new passenger train services come to fruition. We need to persuade Railtrack that there is a need to do this and it would send out a message that they are caring, responsible operators."

Mr Ahmed and Ali are now recovering from the injuries they sustained in the accident.

Mr Ahmed's other son Abib, three, who was also in the car, escaped with only minor injuries.

No-one from Railtrack was available for comment yesterday.


-- (, April 25, 2000

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