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Drivers put lives at risk

PUBLISHED: 10:14 15 August 2008 | UPDATED: 21:03 05 July 2010

IMPATIENT motorists are putting the safety of themselves and numerous local train passengers on the line by failing to obey the basic rules of the road at a level crossing in Oulton Broad.

IMPATIENT motorists are putting the safety of themselves and numerous local train passengers on the line by failing to obey the basic rules of the road at a level crossing in Oulton Broad.

That was the message from the British Transport Police this week as they revealed that a growing number of drivers are failing to stop at the Oulton Broad North crossing lights.

They revealed that three drivers last week were caught failing to stop at the crossing lights on Bridge Road, while six in the last month were caught encroaching and stopping in the yellow box.

They also revealed that last year saw a total of 28 convictions for drivers who failed to stop at the red lights.

“There has always been a steady flow of traffic from Lowestoft to Oulton Broad and we have found that some motorists are attempting to beat the lights or, because of the flow, encroach on the yellow boxes,” said Sgt Andy Cook, of the British Transport Police.

The barriers come down every half an hour to let trains pass along the Norwich to Lowestoft line. This does often result in traffic queuing back along Bridge Road and Normanston Drive, but the British Transport Police are warning drivers not to risk a severe accident just to save a few minutes.

“Last week three people were caught failing to conform to the red lights, with one even overtaking another car that had stopped for a red light to zigzag the descending barriers,” said Sgt Cook. “That is dangerous and we will be prosecuting,” he said.

In the past year a number of drivers have been banned for similar offences, while many more have received penalty points and three-figure fines for their indiscretions.

“We want to give advice to motorists rather than just prosecute and we are looking to educate so that these offences don't happen.

“We want drivers to be mindful that the crossing is there and make them appreciate that whatever speed the train is travelling it could cause serious damage,” he added.


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