Rail safety issues and actions
Recommendation issued to: Northern Territory Department of Planning and Infrastructure
|Date issued:||13 February 2008|
|Safety action status:|
|Background:||Why this Recommendation was developed|
The evidence is that the road traffic control measure of 'stop and give-way to trains' at the Fountain Head Road level crossing, Ban Ban Springs, was not being complied with by a number of road vehicle drivers before the accident on 12 December 2006.
The Northern Territory Department of Planning and Infrastructure have overseen rail safety campaigns undertaken by the Northern Territory Rail Safety Committee before and after the Alice Springs to Darwin rail line was opened in 2004. These campaigns were aimed at promoting public awareness of the risk of rail operations and safe motorist behaviour at level crossings and took the form of television, radio and newspaper advertising and posters.
Since the accident at the Fountain Head Road level crossing:
- A level crossing assessment group has been formed and is further examining all level crossings in the Northern Territory, including occupation level crossings, under the Australian Level Crossing Assessment Model. A number of additional assessment criteria have been established and all level crossings are to be properly mapped and named.
- The NT Government introduced a demerit points system and increased fines for infringements of the Australian Road Rules. Failure to obey traffic control measures at level crossings will incur three demerit points. In addition, penalties for such offences have been increased from $80 to $500.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau recommends that the Northern Territory Department of Planning and Infrastructure takes action to address this safety issue.