Dozens of near misses as Canberra’s first ever Rail Safety Week arrives

Lachlan Roberts 6 August 2019 8

A young cyclist in front of two oncoming vehicles in a screengrab from footage released by ACT Government.

A man falls in front of an LRV.

There has only been one reported car and light rail collision since the service launched.

Transport Minister Chris Steel urged Canberrans to be aware when they’re driving or walking around the light rail tracks.

“Pedestrians need to stay alert and always look both ways before crossing at intersections and crossings. Light rail vehicles can approach from either direction and at any time,” Mr Steel said.

“Motorists should follow traffic signals and make sure not to queue across the tracks at any time.”

Road Safety Minister Shane Rattenbury highlighted the severity of potentially being hit by a light rail vehicle.

“With each light rail weighing around 40 tonnes, it’d be like getting hit with six elephants at once,” Mr Rattenbury said. “Please take care around our big, red light rail vehicles, Canberra!”

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8 Responses to Dozens of near misses as Canberra’s first ever Rail Safety Week arrives
Gilavon Gilavon 4:39 pm 09 Aug 19

The electronic “clanger” audible alarm isn’t satisfactory, needs to be louder with more alarm about it. It’s only a matter of time before someone is skittled.

Gilavon Gilavon 2:08 pm 09 Aug 19

So six elephants weigh around 40 tonnes? Why not say “Being hit by 40 tonnes of tram is an unpleasant experience”?

Julie Macklin Julie Macklin 1:05 pm 09 Aug 19

The danger is increased if the path runs parallel to the track. It's harder to see what's behind. That's a very dangerous way to build paths that cross. The safest crossings approach straight, directly to the track, with good signage, both beside and on the path.

Peter Mackay Peter Mackay 11:23 am 09 Aug 19

Get those things off the roads. Either that or make them noisier.

Julie Macklin Julie Macklin 10:29 am 09 Aug 19

If necessary I guess boom gates, similar to the boom gates on the footpath that crosses the rail line near Bungendore Station could be used. But more expense. Best if people learnt to look before they cross and take off those ear phones. And the trouble with boom gates is that the sort of people who don't look, are likely the same sort of people who would ignore the boom gates and go around them. I hope the crossings have sounds for the sight impaired.

Brett Griffiths Brett Griffiths 7:30 am 09 Aug 19

I’d like to see all the other ones where the tram runs the red lights etc too!

Stephen Saunders Stephen Saunders 9:39 am 08 Aug 19

On Northbourne, Canberra drivers routinely run red lights and turn in front of traffic, AFP doesn’t police it. Maybe after the first few fatalities?

Ed N Joanne Towner Ed N Joanne Towner 1:55 pm 07 Aug 19

Heavy vehicle, and relatively silent, people being inattentive, or thinking they have time to get across will result in near missed or not misses.

ACT transport are going to have to keep up the safety warnings regularly in particular in the period people are becoming accustomed to their constant presence.

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