Freight Rail, Passenger Rail, Safety, Standards & Regulation

Monday marks start of Rail Safety Week

V/Line train going through level crossing. Photo:

Harm prevention charity TrackSAFE has a diverse range of activities planned for this year’s annual community awareness week, which began today.

TrackSAFE executive director Naomi Frauenfelder said fun community events, police bands and BBQ’s at stations, school competitions, pop up outdoor movie theatres, special police operations/dog squads and a visit from Thomas the Tank Engine were just some the events set to take place to help raise awareness.

“TrackSAFE, together with 48 rail, police and government organisations from around Australia and New Zealand are proud to celebrate Rail Safety Week 15-21 August,” Frauenfelder said.

“Now in its 11th successful year, Rail Safety Week draws on research and trends to deliver an internationally recognised annual awareness week.

“Rail Safety Week is a multifaceted campaign bringing the important message of rail safety to every layer of the community. There is an obvious need to address the statistics; every year we witness thousands of near hits and trespass incidents, fatalities on the network, as well as illegal behaviour at level crossings and graffiti/vandalism on, or around trains. These incredibly dangerous acts all too often end in tragedy.”

Frauenfelder said by uniting with rail industry, government, road safety, education and police, TrackSAFE can deliver a strong voice to community members.

“It’s important for every member of the community to respect the safety measures put in place to ensure their lives, and the lives of those around them, are kept out of harm’s way,” she continued.

“Whether crossing at a level crossing, going to work, school, on holiday or visiting family and friends, everyone deserves to be safe around trains and tracks.

“All deaths or injuries on the rail network are 100 percent avoidable if people simply obey the rules, and are aware and alert at all times.

“We all share in the responsibility when it comes to rail safety. I encourage all members of the community to jump online and find out where their nearest Rail Safety Week event is taking off.”