Industry News

Crossing the Tracks Right

Crossing the tracks right at level crossings poses unique safety challenges for truck drivers, especially when some crossings don’t have flashing lights and boom gates.

The Australian Trucking Association is at the forefront of advocating for improved safety measures at these critical junctions. We are working tirelessly to enhance level crossing safety across the country, and we want to see zero deaths and serious injuries at these intersections of road and rail.

Action recently taken by the government has reinforced the urgency of this issue. The release of the Australian Government’s National Level Crossing Safety Strategy in February, and the National Level Crossing Safety Roundtable held in March have highlighted the need for collaborative efforts between the government and industry stakeholders to address level crossing safety comprehensively. Both government and industry have acknowledged the ATA’s proactive stance and its constructive engagement in finding solutions to enhance safety measures.

The ATA has launched several initiatives aimed at improving level crossing safety. One notable effort is the development of educational material with the NHVR targeting truck drivers, highlighting the importance of adhering to safety protocols when approaching and traversing level crossings. By promoting awareness and responsible behaviour among drivers, the ATA aims to help manage the risks present at these intersections.

Furthermore, the ATA has been actively involved in advocating for signage, infrastructure upgrades and greater visibility measures on trains, such as beacon lights and conspicuity markings. These upgrades are crucial in alerting drivers to approaching trains and facilitating safer navigation through level crossings. We will continue to consult with the rail industry on their standards and codes of practice to make crossings safer for all.

News stories documenting level crossing incidents serve as urgent reminders of the importance of these safety initiatives. Tragically, lives have been lost, underscoring the urgent need for preventive measures to avoid such accidents in the future. It is simply not acceptable that any lives are endangered while using these crossings.

Our advocacy efforts have gained support from various quarters, including industry stakeholders, government officials, and safety advocates. By fostering collaboration and consensus-building, we will continue to be instrumental in driving meaningful change in level crossing safety standards. We will continue to prioritise public safety and do what it takes to prevent avoidable tragedies on our roads.

One of the key challenges in improving level crossing safety lies in addressing the diverse factors contributing to accidents. From poor visibility at crossings to inadequate infrastructure and deficient regulatory frameworks, a multifaceted approach is required to tackle this complex issue effectively. The ATA recognises the need for a holistic strategy that includes education, rolling stock upgrades, infrastructure upgrades, policy reform, and greater utilisation of technology.

Government support is pivotal in driving systemic changes and allocating resources to address critical safety concerns. The ATA’s collaborative approach, coupled with government support, represents a shared commitment to improving level crossing safety nationwide. As policymakers consider legislative reforms and funding allocations, the ATA remains a vocal advocate for robust measures that contribute towards zero harm at level crossings.

Looking ahead, the ATA’s advocacy efforts are poised to shape the future of level crossing safety in Australia. We are championing innovative solutions, fostering partnerships, and maintaining a steadfast focus on outcomes. With collaboration and commitment, our vision of zero fatalities and serious injuries at level crossings is within reach, building a brighter and safer future for road and rail users alike.

 

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Crossing the Tracks Right appeared first on Power Torque.

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