WATCH: Driver 5 seconds from death at railway crossing

AURIZON has released shocking video footage of a Central Queensland driver less than five seconds away from being crushed by a 12,000 tonne coal train. 

It was one of a spate of near misses and a collision at level crossings in recent days that has horrified train drivers and rail safety leaders at Australia's largest rail freight company.

This week is National Rail Safety Week, the annual community awareness week held in Australia and New Zealand designed to engage the community in safe rail practices.

In the footage of the Central Queensland incident which occurred near Gladstone, a car is seen to swerve around boom gates only seconds before an Aurizon coal train travels through the crossing.

Two kilometre long coal trains travelling at 80 kilometres an hour can take up to two kilometres to stop after applying the emergency brakes.

Aurizon has reported the incident to local police.

Other incidents in recent days include:

  • A collision between a fully loaded coal train and vehicle in the Lockyer Valley.
  • Youths jumping motorbikes up the embankment of a rail corridor near Moranbah.
  • A vehicle crossing the tracks directly in front of a train as it went through a level crossing near the port of Hay Point, Mackay.

Aurizon's Head of Safety, Neil Backer, said level crossing near misses and incidents are extremely traumatic for the train drivers.

"The footage clearly shows the motorist blatantly ignoring the law at the level crossing and putting their life and the lives of our train drivers at risk," Mr Backer said.

"We're continually pleading with the community to obey the law at level crossings and near the rail corridor.

"Our drivers can't swerve to miss you, they can only apply the emergency brakes and hope to stop in time. They rely on the community to make safe decisions each and every time they are near the tracks.

"Stop, Look, Listen and Think. Stay off the tracks. Our message is clear and it is simple.

"Don't play Russian roulette with our drivers - they deserve to go to work and come home safely each day."



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