CCTV catches woman seconds from being hit by a train after climbing on to level crossing
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CCTV footage has shown the moment a woman had a lucky escape after climbing onto a closed level crossing. The heart-stopping video shows how she was just seconds away from being hit by a train as she climbed over the gate.
Two women are shown in the footage, climbing around the locked level crossing gate, with one quickly turning back to avoid the oncoming train. The incident happened at Elsenham in Essex, at the same level crossing where two teenage girls were killed after being hit by a train in 2005.
Olivia Bazlinton, 14, and Charlotte Thompson, 13, lost their lives after being hit by a train travelling at 70mph on their way home from Christmas shopping. Network Rail was fined £1 million after it was discovered that the automatic locking system on the gates had failed before the girls attempted to cross the tracks.
The rail company has released the CCTV of this year’s incident, which was described as “shocking” by Olivia’s mum, Tina Hughes, as Network Rail urged people to stick to railway rules. Tina said: “I was shocked when I saw the video but I hope it will help to prevent others gambling with their lives in future.
“After all the improvements that have been made to this level crossing and so many others after Olivia and Charlotte’s deaths, it is hard to believe that people would ignore the safety measures and warnings. ‘I urge everyone to read instructions carefully and always respect locked gates, barriers, lights and alarms.”
Network Rail said there had been 20 accidental fatalities on level crossings around the country since April 2019, with six deaths happening in Anglia. Across the Anglian region alone, there have already been 42 near-misses this year.
Suzanne Renton, Network Rail Anglia’s head of safety, said: “Our teams across Anglia were out and about yesterday speaking with passengers and members of the public about sticking to the rules on level crossings.
"The women in the CCTV video came to no harm thankfully, but it clearly shows how taking a risk on the railway could easily end in death or serious injury.”
Network Rail said that it has since appointed over 100 level crossing managers to manage and improve the safety of crossings. Since the near-miss in April, a footbridge has been built at Elsenham level crossing and the gates are now locked shut when a train is coming.