Level crossings

You should take special care when crossing a railway line using a level crossing, especially if it’s a user worked crossing. We've put together some advice with Network Rail to help you stay safe.

  • When approaching the crossing, always obey any alarm, warning signals or lights, and keep your children close and your dog on a lead.
  • If there are no warnings or lights, you should stop, look and listen and then look again before crossing. Trains can travel faster than you might think and take longer to brake to a halt than a car. Curving lines and overgrown vegetation can sometimes obscure both yours and the driver’s view, so it’s very important to listen for an oncoming train and not rely on your eyesight alone.
  • If there is a sign at the crossing directing you to use the telephone, you must use it to contact railway staff to get permission to cross. Make sure you tell them if you are walking as a group.
  • If walking in a group, don’t just follow the person in front. Ensure the person in front of you has cleared the crossing area and is over any stiles or through gates at the crossing before you start to cross. Everyone is responsible for their own safety and should always stop, look and listen before crossing.
  • When you are sure it is safe, cross quickly and take care not to trip on the rails or touch either the electrified third rail or any other wires.
  • When using a user worked crossing, make sure you shut both sets of gates behind you and that you have enough time to do so.
  • No one should ever stop on a crossing nor conduct others across.

Find out more about level crossings and resources to help teach children how to use them safely.