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Footage shows moped narrowly avoiding 70mph train at level crossing

Footage shows moped narrowly avoiding 70mph train at level crossing

Two people on a moped narrowly avoided being hit by a 70mph train after riding through red lights at a level crossing.

Network Rail released dramatic CCTV footage of the incident near Littlehampton, West Sussex, which police said shows “stupidly reckless behaviour”.

The red lights were flashing and its barriers were down for several seconds before the moped arrived at the crossing.

The rider steered on to the wrong side of the road to avoid the first barrier, and passed over the tracks moments ahead of a Southern train.

It caused the driver of the Brighton to Southampton service to make an emergency stop.

The incident happened at Toddington crossing at 3.09pm on February 21.

Network Rail route director Lucy McAuliffe said: “We came very close to having two deaths on our railway, and a train driver living with the memories of that.

“We try to make our network as safe as possible but we do need people to work with us by paying attention to red lights and barriers.

“We need to track these people down and make sure they know the consequences of their actions.”

Inspector Emma Boulton of British Transport Police (BTP) said: “This is some of the most stupidly reckless behaviour on a level crossing I have seen in my entire career.

“These riders blatantly ignored the red light in front of them and were just split seconds away from a truly catastrophic collision, which I have no doubt would have had fatal consequences.

“This footage should serve as a very explicit reminder to everyone of the dangers of misusing level crossings.”

Southern’s health, safety and security director Samantha Facey said: “This video beggars belief. Today we could be talking about a double death with all the misery and heartache that would cause the bikers’ families and friends.

“And think of our driver: no-one should have to be put through this trauma and none of our passengers should find themselves put at risk in this way.

“Sadly, we’ve also seen a rise in young people trespassing on the railway. It’s an incredibly dangerous place, so please, please, please keep off the tracks.”

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact BTP by texting 61016 and quoting log 411 of 21/02/23.