School children across Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire warned to keep off the tracks and tune into railway safety lessons at home: People on the tracks at Grays level crossing in Essex

Monday 23 Mar 2020

School children across Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire warned to keep off the tracks and tune into railway safety lessons at home

Region & Route:
Anglia
  • Child railway trespass injuries always spike during school closures
  • First ever opportunity to tune into railway safety lessons from home
  • Parents urged to hammer home railway safety message before it’s too late

Parents and carers are being urged to hammer home the railway safety message – ‘keep off the tracks’ – now schools across the region are closed, as ‘holidays’ always see a spike in railway trespass, often with horrendous consequences for children and their families.

More than 1,800 trespass incidents occurred on Anglia’s rail network last year. Nationally, more than 13,500 trespass incidents occur on the rail network each year, a quarter of which involve youths.

Allan Spence, head of public and passenger safety at Network Rail said: “Easter holidays and the clocks going forward are the start of the peak for railway trespass and with schools now closed for an extended period, I’m really worried that the railway will become an irresistible but catastrophic playground for young people.

“Each year, we see hundreds of people taking risks on and around the railway, resulting in tragic consequences and life-changing injuries.

“Please talk to your children, access our free school railway safety lessons and help us to help protect young people. It’s straightforward: everyone loses if you choose to step on the track.”

Network Rail and British Transport Police run a hard-hitting safety campaign – You Vs Train, which highlights the devastating consequences of trespassing on the railway.

With the early closure of schools, parents have the opportunity to sign up for free online tutorials of the You Vs Train railway safety lessons, which are normally broadcast into schools via the rail industry’s educational partner LearnLive; visit https://learnliveuk.com/trespass-awareness-week/ for more details.

Notes to Editors

Important messages for parents and carers to share with children:

  • The rail network is never switched off. Electricity powers the overhead cables and third rail 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Passenger services are not the only users of the rail network. Freight trains run all through the day and night.
  • Never anticipate that you know when the next train is due. Fewer passenger trains running on the rail network allows more freight services to operate during the day, transporting vital goods around the country. A freight train can travel at up to 100mph

Further information on rail safety can be found at www.youvstrain.co.uk

Contact information

Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41

Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Journalists
Network Rail press office - Katie Mack
Media relations manager (Anglia route)
020 3356 2515
Katie.Mack@networkrail.co.uk

About Network Rail

We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.

Every day, there are more than 4.8 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.

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