Australia, Safety, Transport Industry News

ATA calls for level crossing petition signatures

ATA

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) is engaging the transport industry, calling for signatures for a petition to the federal government regarding level crossing safety and train visibility.

The petition was launched by the Improve Train Lighting and Level Crossing Safety Group, led by spokesperson Lara Jensen whose brother was tragically killed in a crash at an unlit level crossing in Western Australia.

ATA senior adviser Chris Wren says industry can make a difference on level crossing safety by signing the petition.

“Crashes at level crossings often result from poor visibility, leading to tragic consequences that could be prevented with better lighting and reflective materials,” he says.

“These visibility improvements are essential for pedestrians and motorists near railway crossings, and for train passengers and crew.”

The ATA says that the petition has already gained significant support from community members and the industry.

“In Australia there is no legal requirement for trains to be lit to a particular standard,” the ATA says in the petition.

“In contrast, oversize trucks are required by law to be fitted with flashing beacon lights and all trailers must be fitted with mandatory side lighting.

“Trains are at least 15 times heavier than trucks and can be up to 1.8km long, yet they have minimal frontal lighting and no side lighting. Trains remain the largest and most poorly lit vehicle on land.

“Currently, 80 per cent of the 23,000 railway crossings in Australia do not have warning lights, making it essential for trains to have adequate illumination.

“Between 1 July 2014 and 31 December 2022 across Australia’s level crossings there were 7,839 near hits, 322 collisions, 39 fatalities and 49 serious injuries involving either road vehicles or pedestrians.”

The petition will remain open until 11:59PM on July 31. You can sign it here.

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