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THREE children aged as young as ten, have narrowly missed being hit by the high-speed tilt train in central Queensland.
The children were walking along the tracks on the Boyne River Bridge near Benaraby, south of Gladstone, yesterday when the tilt train approached at 140km/h.
Queensland Rail acting chief executive Martin Ryan said the driver was forced to brake to avoid hitting the children who jumped off the bridge to avoid being struck.
"This incident could easily have ended in tragedy, not only for the three youths but their families, friends and of course the train driver," Mr Ryan said.
"As you can imagine, this has shaken the train driver - the three youths, aged between ten and 13, don't know just how lucky they are."
He said the train driver was extremely stressed by the incident, but the children escaped detection.
"Tannum Sands Police went to the bridge to investigate, however, the youths had already fled,'' Mr Ryan said.
"This is one of multiple incidents in central Queensland this year which could have quite easily become a fatality.''
More than four times a week, trains narrowly avoid hitting pedestrians who risk their lives by crossing the tracks against flashing lights and 'don't walk' signals.
"Queensland Rail's community education team has recently visited schools in regional Queensland, reinforcing the importance of rail safety to students,'' Mr Ryan said.
''All we ask is that parents are aware of what their kids are up to these holidays and remind them of all the things they would be leaving behind if they take risk of playing near the tracks.''
Last week, ten youths were alleged to have cut lines in a Queensland Rail signal box at Helensvale and sprayed graffiti on a train in another high-risk crime.
So far this year three people have been killed in collisions with trains, including two pedestrians and a tractor driver.
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