Tag Archives: Level Crossing upgrade

Pirron Yallock: Truck – train collision, crossing upgrade by end of year

15 Jul

A passenger train derailed with injuries to 19 as a result of a collision with a truck on a the Phalps Road level crossing in Pirron Yallock, near Colac, Victoria. The accident on July 13th, 2016 was at a crossing with a significant incident history which four years ago triggered an upgrade of the crossing four years ago. However, the lightly-used crossing is not due to have automatic half-barriers installed until the end of 2016. Unsurprisingly, questions are being asked as to why it takes more than four years to complete this upgrade.

Plumpton, UK: Closed crossing reopens

10 Feb

Network Rail reopened the level crossing on February 8th, 2016 which had divided Plumpton, Sussex, with a seven-mile detour as the only alternative. Network Rail closed the manually operated level crossing in September 2015 as a component of a wider reksignalling project. However, this was before planning consent was obtained.

The extended closure was as a result of the time it took Network Rail to secure the necessary consent from Lewes District Council. Both the council and residents were opposed to the planned replacement of gates by barriers and elimination of the signal box. The updating with a modern alternative was clearly justified from the Network Rail perspective. However, jumping the gun with the closure of the crossing coming when the district council’s planning committee rejected Network Rail’s initial proposals for a modernised crossing has unnecessarily  antagonised the community and harmed the company’s standing in Plimpton.



Plumpton, UK: Petition calls for compensation

18 Jan

The long-running saga of the Plumpton level crossing “temporarily closed” by Network Rail before the necessary consent was in place has taken an unexpected turn with the launch of a petition addressed to Network Rail calling for compensation for crossing users faced with a seven mile journey to get from one half of the village to the other. The closure has also had a significant impact on bus services, including school services.

The petition has been launched in the context of Network Rail having secured consent from Lewes District Council last week which permits the development of the level crossing in modern form, rather than with gates operated locally. This project is an element of a wider Network Rail area re-signalling scheme.

While the level crossing is to be reopened next month, there are clearly lessons for Network Rail which needs to prevent any further cases of works which close a level crossing to pedestrian and vehicular before the necessary consents are obtained. It is arrogant to proceed with a lengthy closure as at Plumpton without all necessary consents in place.

Redcar, UK: First sliding gates commissioned

17 Dec

Network Rail has co2e6c3718c3df45e7a8e871f9c4f187fammissioned Great Britain’s first sliding gate level crossing barriers at the West Dyke Road manually controlled level crossing in Redcar, Cleveland. The gates which  slide parallel with the railway mark the end of the existing boom gate barrier which was plagued by reliability problems during high winds.

The new gates were originally due to be installed in 2018 but with the old barriers increasingly difficult to operate in strong winds, Network Rail took the decision to fast-track the approval process with Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council and fit the new gates ahead of schedule.

The upgraded crossing came into operation on December 14th, 2015 fwith Redcar MP Anna Turley on hand to speak to engineers who worked throughout the weekend to make sure the crossing opened on schedule.

Mark Tarry, Route Managing Director for Network Rail, said: “We have been all too aware of the problems suffered at West Dyke Road in high winds and decided that the level of disruption caused needed addressing ahead of the original programme.

“The new barrier has been designed with this specific problem in mind and is unlike any existing crossing on the network, and we are confident that its installation with help improve the flow of traffic and pedestrians in Redcar.”

Anna Turley said: “It is fantastic to see the wind-proof barriers in place at last and to welcome the first trains through it this morning.

An end to the traffic chaos will be a welcome relief to residents, bus users, and local businesses who have long suffered from the repeated breakdowns and closures.

“I am pleased we have been able to secure this upgrade well ahead of the original schedule and I would like to thank Network Rail who have worked hard to get the new system built and installed.”

The highway stop lines and yellow traffic boxes have also been moved nearer to the crossing barriers to create more space for traffic and pedestrians when waiting at the barrier.

**A video of the gates in action is available in our media gallery

Littlehampton, UK: M & S Simply Food triggers crossing upgrade

2 Dec

Arun District Council has approved plans for a Marks & Spencer (M & S) Simply Food store on the border between Angmering and Rustington, near Littlehampton, which has triggered an upgrade of a nearby level crossing. M & S has agreed with Network Rail, that it will pay half of the cost of upgrading the footpath crossing through the installation of active controls.

Bang Toey, Thailand: Residents demand active controls at busy level crossing

16 Nov

The latest accident on the passive level crossing on the Bang Toey-Pattana road has led to further calls for active controls as the ere are now three tracks over which more than 40 trains access the port of Laem Chebang. Sighting of approaching trains is compromised by other trains. Since the railway was upgraded there have been four serious accidents on this level crossing.

Plumpton, UK: Public meeting hears plans to reopen crossing

19 Oct

151f71ab05604ccab6e458a8924d6b68At an October 16th, 2015 public meeting chaired by Maria Caulfield MP for Lewes, Network Rail  announced plans to remove the Plumpton level crossing gates and replace them with a safe 21st century solution in order to reopen the road by mid-November.

A team from Network Rail explained to local residents the options for safely reopening the level crossing.  Following reviews with relevant experts and Lewes District Council this week, the Network Rail team reported that the quickest and safest way to reopen the crossing was to install a full-width barrier crossing with automatic object detection equipment – a modern, safe system used widely in Britain and other European countries. This will begin immediately with the intention to open the road within five weeks.

The current unsafe listed gates to the crossing will be carefully removed over the weekend 24/25 October and stored safely until a long-term solution for the crossing has been determined with full consent from the local authority.

At the same time, Network Rail will appeal Lewes District Council planning committee’s decision, as well as submitting a new application for listed buildings consent.  Network Rail assured residents that they will be bound by the outcome of both of these processes and that they will continue to work closely with the council to understand the implications of doing this.

We will work with the parish, district and county councils to address a number of issues raised in the meeting, including signage and measures to help people with personal mobility issues.

Alasdair Coates, Network Rail route managing director for the South East, said: “It’s clear many people will be disappointed by this decision but the community were clear that the priority for them is to reopen the road as quickly and safely as possible.  The solution announced this evening is the only option that will allow us to do that. The Plumpton level crossing gates will be carefully removed and stored whilst the appeal and new application for listed buildings consent is pursued.”