Train stations and those working within the rail industry would be wise to ensure that they focus heavily on emergency preparedness during the summer months, as new research has revealed that children are twice as likely to make their way onto the tracks at this time of year.
Figures from Network Rail show that nearly 600 trespass incidents were reported in August 2014, compared with fewer than 300 in December. In the past decade, nearly 170 young people have actually lost their lives because of trespassing on the railway, with just under half of those who died were under the age of 25.
In all, 72 per cent of all those who trespassed and died in the last ten years were struck by a train, while another 17 per cent were electrocuted. The remainder either fell from a structure or from a train.
Network Rail Group Safety, Technical and Engineering Director Graham Hopkins comments: "As the railway gets busier and we electrify more lines to improve services, we must work harder to keep young people safe by making them aware of the dangers that exist. Taking a short cut or messing around on the tracks can result in serious life-changing injuries or death."
Parents concerned about the safety of their children can make use of a helpful safety guide provided by Network Rail. Fact sheets include the Rail Life Safety Guide, and Using Level Crossings, while there's also a film available to show youngsters called Crossing Over about the dangers of level crossings that is suitable for those over the age of 12.