Accident claim railway cases are thankfully extremely rare. There are far more accidents on our roads than on our railways and the safety record of the UK railway system is good. This means that a law firm like Accident Advice Helpline deals with very few accident claim railway queries from people who have been hurt in railway accidents that were not their own fault.
However, this does not mean that hazards do not exist. One of the most dangerous spots for railways is barrier crossing. This is where a railway crosses a road. Obviously, this is potentially a very dangerous situation and has to be carefully controlled using a complex safety system. Let’s have a look at barrier crossings in more detail and examine how they help to prevent accident claim railway cases.
Accident claim railway cases – barrier crossings
A full barrier crossing blocks the whole road when a train is approaching. Accident claim railway cases are prevented by stopping cars and trains from being on the same section of road/track at the same time. Motorists can help this procedure by:
- Driving carefully up to the crossing and being prepared to stop if they have to
- Never entering the crossing if their exit is not clear – this may happen if the driver is in a line of slow moving traffic
- Wait behind the white line when the amber lights are on or the red light is flashing motorists
- If the lights come on when you are already across the white line then the safe thing to do is to keep going – it will get you out of the danger zone quickest
- If the red lights keep flashing they are indicating that another train is on the way and so it is NOT safe to enter the area beyond the barrier
- When the lights stop completely and the barrier is completely raised it indicates that it is now safe to enter the crossing.
A half barrier crossing only blocks your side of the road and so it is especially important not to become impatient and bypass the barrier by going on the wrong side of the road. Pedestrians are also at risk on railway crossings. They can also help themselves by:
- Not entering the crossing when the alarms are sounding or the lights are flashing – if this starts when you are already on the crossing then carry on in the same direction so that you can get off the crossing quickly.
- Waiting behind the white line until the barrier is raised, the alarm has stopped and the lights have gone off. If you are blind or partially sighted there is usually tactile paving (with raised lumps) to indicate a safe place to stand.
- Always looking both ways before crossing even if there are no alarms, lights or barriers. Trains can come from both directions and can approach at very high speeds. Do not rely on your hearing alone – the approach of some electric trains can be somewhat quiet.
Date Published: 8th June 2013
Author: Sharon Parry