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Warning words for railway children

PUBLISHED: 15:04 04 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:29 03 March 2010

CHILDREN crossing a rail line to get to and from school have been given safety advice – the railway version of the "green cross code".

British Transport police manned the public foot crossing on the edge of Felixstowe to speak to youngsters as they came home from school following reports from train drivers that children had been playing chicken on the line.

CHILDREN crossing a rail line to get to and from school have been given safety advice – the railway version of the "green cross code".

British Transport police manned the public foot crossing on the edge of Felixstowe to speak to youngsters as they came home from school following reports from train drivers that children had been playing chicken on the line.

Drivers of freight and passenger trains had seen children as young as nine and ten dashing across the line at the last minute and feared one would be killed.

The incidents have been happening at the Runnacles Way crossing at Cricket Hill – mainly involving children going to and from Causton Junior and Orwell High schools.

BT police officers stopped children and advised them of the hazards, pointing out that they should only cross when the track is completely clear and no train can be seen approaching in either direction.

They should also walk quickly and carefully across the line – and never play on it.

Railtrack has also been asked to send its representatives to the schools to get the message across.

Sergeant Bob Munn, of the transport police, said it was a case of having to get the message across to each generation of children, teaching them to cross the rail line as safely as they would learn to cross roads.

He said many youngsters did not have a good perception of speed and the trains were often closer than they realised.

"When a train hits you, you don't survive – you don't have any chance," said Sgt Munn.

"It's an enormously heavy, fast-moving object, and you would just be crushed.

"My worry is that someone will be killed playing these games and running across the line and we need to make them aware of the danger now.

"There is good visibility and the children should take their time to look up and down the line to make sure there are no trains in sight and that they can hear no trains coming. If there is a train, wait.

"If they are in any doubt they should not risk it. If they are five minutes late for school, then so be it – better that than dead.

"When they are sure they there are no trains they should cross carefully and quickly."


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