Brighton Residents Putting Lives
OREANDA-NEWS. Almost half the people from the south coast city (44%) report using their phone when catching or getting off a train and 27 per cent admit they use their mobile when crossing a road. A fifth even admit to using their phone while using a level crossing.
The Populus research on phone distraction also highlights that one in three young adults nationwide say they would be more aware of their surroundings if they ditched their phone for 24 hours. Most spend time checking social media (63%) and surfing the web (44%).
While Britain still has the safest rail network in Europe, level crossings are one of the biggest public safety risks on the railway.
Louise Carvey, head of safety at Network Rail’s South East Route, said: “Anyone with a mobile phone knows how easy it is to get glued to the screen and lose awareness of what is going on around you.
“Many young people in particular have said they have used their phones while crossing the railway, which puts them at unnecessary risk when their safety depends on paying attention to warnings and watching and listening for trains.
“We are investing more than ?100m to improve level crossing safety across Britain, but we also need everyone who uses level crossings to do their bit too. By paying attention to the warnings at level crossings and avoiding distractions, we can all keep ourselves safe.”
Kevin Clinton, head of road safety at the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), said: “As we advise drivers and pedestrians to avoid becoming distracted when they’re in a road environment, it’s essential that people are also fully aware of what’s happening around them when they use level crossings. Avoid being dangerously distracted by a mobile phone call, texting, using an app or listening to music through your headphones at a crossing so you’re well aware of what the warning lights, barriers and signs are telling you.
“Trains travel so fast that one could reach the crossing before you get to the other side if you cross when it’s not safe, and of course, the train has no chance of stopping or swerving to avoid a collision. Take special care at level crossings on footpaths, bridleways and other rights of way where there are no barriers or railway staff.”Network Rail owns, manages and develops Britain’s railway – the 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges and viaducts, and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run). In partnership with train operators we help people take more than 1.6bn journeys by rail every year - double the number of 1996 - and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We’re investing ?38bn in the railway by 2019 to deliver more frequent, more reliable, safer services and brighter and better stations.