NSW commuters risk life and limb in their rush to catch the train

Peter Terlato 18 August 2016

Trains Sydney Australia platform

Watch that first step -- it's a doozy!

CCTV footage has revealed thousands of slips, trips, falls and near misses in and around New South Wales train stations over the last year, while police handed out hundreds of infringements for public offences.

Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance reports there were more than 1,800 accidents recorded on the network last year.

NSW police charged more than 80 people using NSW trains in 2015, while transport authorities issued over 240 infringement notices for trespass and rail corridor offences.

There are over 10,000 CCTV cameras monitoring activities year-round at NSW train stations, while more than 600 Police Transport Command officers provide on-the-ground assistance and law enforcement.

"All too often we see people slipping and falling as they rush around station platforms, or not pay attention and fall through the gap," Constance said.

"We also have idiots putting their lives at risk by running across level crossings for a cheap thrill, and narrowly avoiding oncoming trains."

Often is the case freight trains, and some passenger services, come through platforms at speeds that require hundreds of metres stopping distance. The vision released of level crossing breaches show just how little warning drivers have to stop trains if they spot someone illegally crossing the tracks.

"We do everything we can to keep our customers safe and keep an eye out for those who do the wrong thing," Constance added.

Right now, it's Rail Safety Week in Australia and New Zealand, an annual community awareness initiative established by the TrackSAFE Foundation.

Sydney Trains and NSW TrainLink urge commuters to follow these simple steps to improve transport safety:

  • Obey the signals at level crossings
  • Mind the gap between the train and platform
  • walk and never run on the platform or down steps
  • Keep a firm hold and apply the brakes when travelling with a pram or stroller
  • Ensure mobile phones are not a distraction

After the NSW government announced the impending conclusion of free travel benefits, our editor-in-chief and resident Opal hacking enthusiast, Angus Kidman, staged an insane week of trips and travel to achieve the ultimate in maximum public transport value.

You can track and follow his epic five-day journey, travelling to the northernmost point of the network in Scone, down to Goulburn in the state's Southern Tablelands, across Sydney's west and past the Blue Mountains to Bathurst, as well as the two most extreme ferry trips (to Manly and Parramatta) for good measure.

Picture: pisaphotography / Shutterstock.com

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