Regional Australia Level Crossing Safety Program

The Regional Railway Crossing Safety Campaign ran from 19 May 2024 – 30 June 2024. The campaign has now finished.

The Regional Railway Crossing Safety Campaign aims to raise awareness of the risks and safe driving behaviours needed around regional railway crossings.

The campaign focuses on raising awareness among drivers who regularly cross regional railways including heavy vehicle drivers, drivers from regional communities, and drivers who regularly travel through regional areas.

There are more than 23,000 railway level crossings in Australia where a railway line crosses a road or footpath. 

Of these, there are 2 types:

  • active crossings: which have controls that activate as the train approaches, such as boom gates and/or lights, and
  • passive crossings: which may have a ‘Stop’ or ‘Give Way’ sign.

The Regional Australia Level Crossing Safety Program (RALCSP) is an Australian Government initiative providing $180.1 million in funding from 2022–23 to 2026–27 to improve safety around railway crossings in regional areas.

The RALCSP supports collaboration between governments, industry and the public by implementing a holistic and coordinated approach towards improving safety around railway crossings through:

  • the Regional Level Crossing Upgrade Fund – providing investment in lower-cost safety protections
  • Research and Innovation grants – providing funding for research and trials to test and promote the adoption of low cost, innovative safety solutions for railway crossings
  • Data Improvement grant – providing funding for improvements to data and risk assessments of railway crossings
  • delivering education and awareness activities to promote safe behaviours around regional railway crossings

The RALCSP aligns with the objectives of the National Level Crossing Safety Strategy 2023–32 (NLCSS), an initiative of the Australian Government and state and territory Infrastructure and Transport Ministers.

Regional Level Crossing Upgrade Fund

The Australian Government has committed $160 million over 4 years for the Regional Level Crossing Upgrade Fund (RLCUF).

The funding is available each year from 2023–24 to 2026–27 to make railway crossings safer in regional areas, with the Australian Government funding up to 50% of the cost of delivering upgrades.

Projects will be focused on supporting lower-cost, high priority upgrades. Fit-for-purpose treatments may include, but not limited to, signage, boom gates, flashing lights / lighting upgrades and rumble strips to alert motorists and pedestrians approaching regional railway crossings.

Applications can only be made by a state or territory government. Collaboration and co-funding from councils or private organisations is strongly encouraged.

Funding rounds

Two funding rounds are scheduled to be held:

Round 1 — 29 September 2023 (Closed)

For Round 1, 4 states submitted projects for approval. Projects were approved as outlined in the below table:

RLCUF State project approvals Total Projects Approved Media Release link
New South Wales

23

NSW announcement
South Australia

6

SA announcement
Victoria

5

Vic announcement
Western Australia

14

WA announcement

Round 2 — submissions closing 27 September 2024

A review of unspent funds will be undertaken in early 2025 following the second round intake.

Contact: RLCUF@infrastructure.gov.au

Research and Innovation grants

The Australian Government has committed $4.66 million from 2023–24 to 2025–26 for the Level Crossing Research and Innovation grants.

Grants will support research and trial of new technology and approaches to improve railway crossing safety, particularly lower-cost technology and those suited to regional areas.

Contact: levelcrossingsafety@infrastructure.gov.au

Data Improvement grant

The Australian Government has committed $1.7 million for the level crossing Data Improvement grant.

Funding has been provided to the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator to improve data and risk assessments of railway crossings through enhancements to the National Level Crossing Portal. The grant aims to enable road and railway users, including infrastructure managers, to better target protections and prioritise crossings for upgrade.

Contact: levelcrossingsafety@infrastructure.gov.au

Regional Railway Crossing Safety Campaign 

The Regional Railway Crossing Safety Campaign aims to raise awareness of the risks and safe driving behaviours needed around regional railway crossings.

The campaign focuses on raising awareness among drivers who regularly cross regional railways including heavy vehicle drivers, drivers from regional communities, and drivers who regularly travel through regional areas.

It’s important for all drivers to slow down, look and listen for trains at regional railway crossings.

Slow down as you approach a railway crossing and be aware.

Slowing down gives you time to look for signage directions, to check your surroundings – and most importantly, to check for oncoming trains.

Be alert and listen for the sound of an oncoming train, and the sound of the train’s horn before crossing the tracks.

Find out more at regionalrailsafety.gov.au.