Youngsters’ railway selfies spark new safety campaign

By Julie McNicholls Vale   |   Deputy news editor   |
Wednesday 7th July 2021 8:59 am
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People were seen on the train tracks snapping selfies

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This shocking image of youngsters taking selfies on a railway line at Harlech has been released by the authorities, in a bid to stop the dangerous craze.

There has been a rise in illegal access to level crossings in Wales, with 433 serious incidents recorded since the beginning of the pandemic.

The figure was announced today (Wednesday) by Transport for Wales, Network Rail and British Transport Police, with a stark warning for residents and visitors to stay away from the tracks or risk potentially fatal consequences.

Their joint campaign, ‘At What Cost?’, uses an emotive new film inspired by a series of real-life incidents – such as shocking CCTV footage of railway selfies in Harlech to a full-blown photoshoot on tracks in Neath – to warn people of the dangers of level crossing misuse.

Ronnie Gallagher, route level crossing manager at Network Rail said: “Our campaign has been designed to complement our priorities of risk management, education and enforcement - all while encouraging people in Wales to consider the true cost of taking a risk at a level crossing.

“With an expected rise in staycations – not to mention the school holidays – there has never been a more important time for us to launch a campaign around level crossings.”

The campaign illustrates some of the motives people give for taking risks at level crossings – whether to save time, show off in front of friends or take an ‘Instagrammable’ photograph.

The film will be shown on TikTok, Instagram and Spotify as well as some schools and holiday parks.

Richard Powell, inspector at British Transport Police said: “Messing around on level crossings – including lingering to take photos – is illegal and extremely dangerous. You could be taken to court and face a £1,000 fine.

“Trains approach almost silently, so if you’re distracted, you won’t notice until it’s too late. Take care around level crossings. No photograph is worth the risk to you or the consequences for your family and any bystanders.”

For more information visit or visit Transport for Wales, Network Rail or British Transport Police on Facebook.

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