A rural level crossing where a man died when he drove across it has been removed by Network Rail.
In 2014, Eric Ireland, 77, died when the car he was driving was struck by a train travelling at 70mph as he crossed the railway at Ivy Lea Farm in Malton, North Yorkshire.
Since then Network Rail has been working alongside the landowner to get the private crossing closed and removed from the line at Rillington, between York and Scarborough.
Crossings usually found on farm land and are often crucial for farmers to be able to access their land without making long diversions.
Following the closure this week, Network Rail has appealed to the farming community to stay vigilant and remind farm workers of the dangers of level crossings as part of the S.A.F.E.R campaign with the NFU.
Statistics revealed 2016 saw the highest number of level crossing incidents in the past four years.
Network Rail is now planning to remove three other private farm crossings on the York to Scarborough line near Haxby and Barton-le-Willows, which Network Rail have recently legally closed with the agreement of the land owners.
Robert Havercroft, the firm’s level crossing manager whose patch includes Ivy Lea Farm, said: “The removal of Ivy Lea Farm level crossing is something we’ve worked towards for several years and I’m pleased that we reached an agreement to remove the crossing equipment entirely.
“As well as keeping level crossings functioning correctly, my role is to stay in contact with farmers who have private level crossings and make sure they’re being used safely and this campaign is a timely reminder to all farm workers about the right way to cross the railway.”
While Britain still has the safest rail network in Europe, level crossings are one of the biggest public safety risks on the railway.
The new S.A.F.E.R campaign, will help to reinforce the safety critical rules around using private level crossings.
The S.A.F.E.R campaign reminds farmers to:
Speak - If there is a phone, speak to the signaller before and after you cross
Access - Open both gates before crossing and always close them after you
Follow - Check and follow the signs and signals every time you cross
Everyone - Check everyone knows these instructions to get across safely, every time
Responsibility – It is your legal responsibility to ensure your workers and family comply