The NZ Transport Agency and KiwiRail want to remind people living, working or travelling in the area between Blenheim and Christchurch that daytime freight trains are now running on the Main North Line.
The rail corridor is live at all times and anyone driving, walking or cycling in the region must be careful at level crossings and expect trains at any time, from either direction.
Colin Knaggs, Earthquake Recovery Manager, for the Transport Agency, says people may have become used to reduced activity on the rail line.
“Following the Kaikōura earthquake in November 2016, freight trains have been running at night so that the recovery work on the road and rail could continue during the day. It’s important that everyone stay off the tracks at all times and only cross at level crossings. Please take extra care to ensure you and your family stay safe.”
Key safety messages for pedestrians:
- Every time you’re near railway tracks, be alert.
- Only cross at formed pedestrian crossings or an overpass or underpass.
- Remove your headphones, stop and always look both ways for trains before crossing the tracks.
- Only cross if you are sure there are no trains in sight.
- Obey the warning signs at the crossing – if lights are flashing or bells are ringing it means a train is approaching.
- If a train has passed or is stationary at a station, always check both ways again to make sure another train is not coming. Two tracks might mean there is a second train.
Key safety messages for motorists, motorcyclists and cyclists:
- Take extreme care when driving or riding over a railway level crossing.
- Obey the warning signs and look carefully in both directions for trains.
- Listen, be aware and pay careful attention to your surroundings.
- Always ensure there is space on the other side of the crossing for your vehicle.
View KiwiRail's media release with more detail on freight movements(external link)