Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Life Lessons - Level Crossings

I remember in the dim and distant past of my childhood, amongst the Public Information Films about things like flying kites near pylons and always telling your mummy before you go off somewhere, seeing films about safety at Level Crossings.  Level Crossings themselves are a rarer breed than they were during my childhood, but if news items are anything to go by, there's still a need for education about crossing safely. There's so many videos shared on facebook and YouTube of people risking their lives in near misses on level crossings, and I'm sure in part it's due to their decreasing numbers.  To be honest, thinking really hard, I can only think of 3 I know the locations of; one just outside a holiday camp, one in an oddly busy town centre somewhere on the south coast, and one just up the road outside a local fruit farm.

It was the last of these that Squeaky & I, along with PirateGirl, MiniMe and Mummy Mandy found ourselves last week. We had planned to go fruit picking, but sadly the farm had a bad crop last year & don't do pick your own any more, so instead we had a happy hour sitting in a vineyard drinking coffee & eating ice cream.

It was, however, a good opportunity to teach the girls about Level Crossing safety, and what an opportunity. The crossing is a properly manual one, with gates you have to open and close yourself (and I'm too scared to drive over), and the line is really quite busy, with around 12 trains per hour going through. That meant that there was every chance of a train being due while we were at the crossing, giving the girls a real understanding of the crossing, what to do, and why.  And the trains came through, as if we'd planned it. Standing at the crossing gates, checking the lights, and waiting as they has turned to red, along comes a train, whistling through (ok, honking his diesel horn) while we watched from yards away. And then we waited, as the light stayed red, and a second train passed through in the opposite direction. Once the lights changed to green, the girls behaved beautifully, held our hands and walked quickly and carefully across to the other side where we'd parked our cars.

It's not something I would necessarily have thought about, but the increasing rarity of level crossings means that people are less aware of their correct use, putting them at more risk of injury or death.  Hopefully this impromptu lesson will be one our girls retain for the future.  Is this something you've done with your children?


  1. I remember tufty the road safety squirrel

    1. Were you a member of the Tufty Club? I'm more a Charley Says girl myself!


You know what? I love comments. Sometimes I even reply! So leave me a message & brighten up my day!

Please note: Comments on posts over 14 days old are moderated, don't panic. If you're human I will publish. If you're a spammer, I won't, but you can't read this anyway, can you?