National level crossing safety strategy released

The National Level Crossing Safety Strategy 2023–2032 has been released ahead of a roundtable to be held in March.

Level crossings are the highest public safety risk on the rail network, as shown when two rail workers tragically lost their lives in December 2023 following a fatal level crossing accident near the South Australia/New South Wales border.

A rail level crossing safety roundable will be held in Brisbane on 6 March 2024, aimed at identifying any further action that could be taken by governments, regulators and industry to address this critical issue.

The strategy has been developed by the National Level Crossing Safety Committee, comprising representatives from federal, state and local governments, rail industry associations and regulators.

It represents an ongoing commitment to reducing fatalities and injuries at the more than 20,000 level crossings intersecting with roads and pathways across the nation.

The strategy sets out a clear vision for working towards zero harm on the level crossing network, including:

  • Improving public education and enforcement
  • Leveraging emerging technology and innovation
  • Identifying early, low-cost and effective safety improvements
  • Developing improved data and knowledge
  • Increasing coordination and knowledge sharing by those responsible for safety.

Rail workers including train drivers will be represented through their unions.

The Australian Government is already providing $180 million for the Regional Australia Level Crossing Safety Program, including $160 million over 4 years from 2023–24 to 2026–27 to support lower-cost, high-priority railway crossing upgrades.

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