Double trouble looms for drivers ignoring lights at level crossings

South Australia will book drivers twice if they are caught speeding through a level crossing while warning lights are flashing

By Brad Gardner | August 3, 2011

South Australia will soon book drivers twice if they are caught speeding through rail level crossings while the warning lights are flashing.

The Rann Government has introduced the Road Traffic (Red Light Offences) Amendment Bill to alter the Road Traffic Act’s coverage of level crossing offences.

The Act currently permits authorities to penalise drivers twice, including issuing two lots of demerit points, if they are detected speeding while simultaneously running a red light at an intersection.

"This will have the effect of applying the existing double penalty for speeding through a red traffic light or arrow at an intersection to speeding through a level crossing where the twin red lights are flashing," Environment and Conservation Minister Paul Caica says of the amendment.

"The changed definition will flow on to the Motor Vehicles Act 1959 and ensure that demerit points for both offences apply."

Caica says driving through a crossing while the warning lights are flashing poses serious safety risks. He says drivers often speed up when they see the lights flash.

"Crashes at level crossings can have catastrophic impact on car drivers and passengers who often lose their lives or are seriously injured and can cause trauma to train drivers, passengers and the local community," he says.

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