The number of young people taking risks on tracks soars

Network Rail says that research has shown that more than a quarter of teenagers (27%) confessed to behaving in a way that could endanger their life on the railway. One in 10 teenagers admits to walking along the railway line, including more than two fifths (42%) in the last year.

The rail industry and the British Transport Police have launched the You Vs Train campaign. This will confront teenagers with the devastating consequences for them and their loved ones when they make the perilous decision to go on the railway.

The campaign features a short film reenacting Tom’s story, which will be launched across social media and shown in cinemas throughout the summer. Tom’s family will also feature in the campaign to show how his accident has impacted them.

Tom was a young boy when he was electrocuted by overhead power cables after climbing on top of a train in 2014. He endured third degree burns across 57% of his body.

Seven under 18s have died by going on the railway in the last 12 months alone

Allan Spence, head of public and passenger safety at Network Rail, said:

“The railway is full of both obvious and hidden dangers. The electricity on the railway is always on and always dangerous.

“Trains can also travel up to 125 miles per hour, so even if a driver can see your child, they can’t stop in time and they can’t change direction. Parents – please help us keep your children safe by educating them about what they take on when they step on the track.”

The number of young people taking risks on tracks soars Image:Network Rail

Rail tracks are “not a playground”

Robin Smith, assistant chief constable at BTP, said:

“We hope that by sharing Tom’s story, young people who might have previously considered trespassing on the railways will think twice.

“We want his story to be heard – the tracks are not a playground. They’re incredibly dangerous and, as Tom’s story shows, can easily result in serious injury or worse.”

To find out more about the campaign search #YouVsTrain on social media or visit You vs. train website.