September 25th, 2016

Hawkesbury residents say faulty railway barrier is ‘accident waiting to happen’

Updated: 2:55 pm, Jul 08, 2015

‘FIX IT – it is an accident waiting to happen.’

Those are the words of Hawkesbury Village residents whose daily lives are turned upside down by a faulty railway level crossing.

The village to the north of the city is disected by the Coventry to Nuneaton line and sees between 40 and 50 trains passing through each day.

But, the faulty barriers at the Blackhorse Road crossing are not only causing huge traffic delays they are also putting lives at risk.

Since March this year residents have been forced to call out staff from Network Rail 11 times to deal with incidents including the barriers being down for prolonged periods, the warning lights flashing but the barriers not going down and the barriers only going down on one side of the road.

And Lynne Price, Chair of Hawkesbury Village Residents Association, said it is only a matter of time before there is a serious accident.

“When the barriers break they can be down for as long as 30 minutes, which results in a huge backlog of cars and pedestrians.

“While for cars the detour round the crossing isn’t too bad, the detour for pedestrians to get safely across the railway line is massive.

“We would never condone misuse of the crossing, but the delays are causing some pedestrians to become so frustrated that they are risking their lives – by jumping over the barriers when they are down or running across when the lights are flashing and the barriers remain up.

“We accept that Network Rail are sending representatives when a problem occurs, but they are not properly addressing the issue.”

A spokesman for Network Rail said the company were aware of ‘concerns regarding the reliability of the level crossing’ and that recent vandalism had contributed to some of the issues.

They added: “Wider circuitry repairs have also been identified and will be carried out as quickly as possible to try and improve the situation.

“We would encourage everyone who uses the crossing to always obey the warning lights and barriers and for their own safety, if either are in operation, to not cross the crossing.”

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