Level crossing danger videos released by police

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Media captionThe incident happened at Dalcross

Videos showing people putting their lives at risk have been released by police to highlight the dangers of misusing railway level crossings.

In one, a man casually walks around barriers at Dalcross near Inverness just before a train comes through.

A cyclist is knocked off his bike by a barrier at Spondon in Derbyshire, and a motorist gets stuck on the tracks at Narborough in Leicestershire.

British Transport Police described the three clips as "astonishing".

Insp Becky Warren said: "All too often people get into the habit of taking risks at crossings and our message is simple: Use crossings safely.

"It may be tempting to jump a light to shave a minute or two off your journey but every time you do, you endanger your life and the lives of other road and rail users.

"Fail to obey the signals and you may also end up with a driving ban or a criminal record. Is it really worth the risk?"

None of the people were hurt but the woman involved in the incident in Leicestershire was fined £135 and given six penalty points on her licence.

Image copyright BTP handout
Image caption A cyclist was knocked off his bike by a descending barrier
Image copyright BTP handout
Image caption A driver was fined after her car ended up on the tracks

Network Rail said it wanted to remove the risk to people which level crossings created.

Head of level crossings Darren Furness said: "Where possible we close them, and we have already closed more than 900 in the past five years."

Last year, Network Rail offered a "full and unreserved apology" to families bereaved by level crossing accidents.

Chief executive Mark Carne apologised for "failings" in managing public safety and for "failing to deal sensitively" with affected families.

It came as a Commons transport committee report strongly criticised Network Rail's handling of tragedies in the past.

It was particularly critical about the deaths of Olivia Bazlinton, 14, and Charlotte Thompson, 13, at Elsenham crossing in Essex in 2005.

Network Rail was later fined £1m for health and safety breaches in relation to the accident.

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