Parents fear a child could be killed at dangerous rail crossing in Stroud

Parents fear a child could be killed at dangerous rail crossing in Stroud

Residents who live near the Chapel Lane train crossing are fearful for the safety of their children

Worried parents say the gate is frequently left open but even a small child has no difficulty in pushing it open and could easily get on to the track without realising a train might be coming through. They want Network Rail to take action now.

First published in News
Last updated
Stroud News and Journal: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

PARENTS of youngsters who use a ‘dangerous and out-of- date’ level crossing in Stroud are fearful it is only a matter of time before a child is killed unless Network Rail takes action.

Chapel Lane crossing, in Ebley, is used by children walking to and from Foxmoor Primary School every day.

But parents and councillors say the gates are frequently left wide open and the alarm to indicate a train is coming is too quiet.

Abigail Fallis, who lives in Railway Terrace with her husband, Adam Reynolds, and children, Arthur, one, and Beatrice, seven, said: “The pedestrian gates are constantly left open so children think it’s safe to cross.

“ My 21-month-old child can just push the gate open.

The SNJ watched as her small son pushed the gate open without any difficulty.

Labour county councillor Brian Oosthuysen, who represents the Rodborough ward, said: “It is disgraceful and so dangerous.

“We don’t want the death of a child before Network Rail does something about it.”

Concerns have also been raised about pedestrian safety due to a blind hump for crossing vehicles as motorists access houses in Railway Terrace.

Mrs Fallis said: “I cannot express how dangerous this out-of-date crossing is.

“We have all had near-misses with pedestrians while driving over the blind hump.”

Earlier this month Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne apologised for ‘failings’ in managing public safety.

In response, families in Ebley are urgently calling for an automated crossing for pedestrians and new road access for those living in Railway Terrace via the Beagles housing estate.

"Network Rail has said they may improve the crossing in the future, but in light of chief executive Mark Carne's recent comments I think it is time for equipment to be installed to protect the safety of all users of this crossing," said Mrs Fallis.

A spokesman for Network Rail said: “Network Rail takes safety very seriously. We are currently exploring the options to introduce new measures to upgrade Ebley crossing.

“While we will never be complacent when it comes to public safety, we would like to ask for the same vigilance from crossing users to adhere to safety rules and not put their lives at risk at any circumstances.”

Comments (3)

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3:57pm Wed 19 Mar 14

glen dipple says...

why would a concerned mother who fears for the life of a child, allow for a 21 month son to be pushing the gate open anyway. how irresponsible ....
why would a concerned mother who fears for the life of a child, allow for a 21 month son to be pushing the gate open anyway. how irresponsible .... glen dipple
  • Score: 0

6:22pm Wed 19 Mar 14

crossinglady says...

And why is the warning allegedly "to quiet" because residents had previously complained it was to loud! As for the gates, the residents and SNJ reporter cannot fail to have noticed that both have a return spring fitted to ensure they always close, and as they always open away from the railway no child could ever "just push" the gate open. The picture of the child pushing the gate is clearly of the child exiting the crossing. Crossing perfectly safe if used correctly.
And why is the warning allegedly "to quiet" because residents had previously complained it was to loud! As for the gates, the residents and SNJ reporter cannot fail to have noticed that both have a return spring fitted to ensure they always close, and as they always open away from the railway no child could ever "just push" the gate open. The picture of the child pushing the gate is clearly of the child exiting the crossing. Crossing perfectly safe if used correctly. crossinglady
  • Score: 1

11:10pm Sun 23 Mar 14

John Smith II says...

I'll be teaching my young son to treat railway crossings with the same respect that he would show when crossing a road.

I doubt there is anything defective with the stated 'out of date' crossing at all - whether the same could be said of some of the prospective users of it is another question...

“We have all had near-misses with pedestrians while driving over the blind hump.” - exactly how fast was the quoted Mrs Fallis travelling to achieve this mean feat? - I am sure she is aware as a (presumably) responsible driver that she should always be able to stop within the distance that she can see...
I'll be teaching my young son to treat railway crossings with the same respect that he would show when crossing a road. I doubt there is anything defective with the stated 'out of date' crossing at all - whether the same could be said of some of the prospective users of it is another question... “We have all had near-misses with pedestrians while driving over the blind hump.” - exactly how fast was the quoted Mrs Fallis travelling to achieve this mean feat? - I am sure she is aware as a (presumably) responsible driver that she should always be able to stop within the distance that she can see... John Smith II
  • Score: 1

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