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SPEARWOOD residents want more safety measures at a notorious freight rail crossing along a major arterial road, despite the rail line operator claiming it already has “the highest level of protection possible”.
The Rockingham Road rail crossing, near Edline Street and Goldsmith Road has drawn the ire of residents due to concerns for pedestrian safety and a lack of buffers for the houses backing onto the rail reserve.
Local resident Monique Gray has started a petition calling for action to improve safety given the habitual use of the footpath by pedestrians.
There are no barriers between the rail reserve and the footpath, with a boom gate and lights separating vehicles from the tracks. No more than 10 trains each day use that section of the track.
Rockingham Road is considered a primary distributor road and the crossing is close to two bus stops, while Spearwood Alternative School is about 600m away.
Ms Gray said the community wanted maze barriers like the ones at rail crossings at North Lake Drive in Bibra Lake and Wattleup Road in Wattleup.
“The pedestrian crossing is mediocre at best with no maze pedestrian fencing and yellow squares,” she said.
The rail reserve at the Rockingham road crossing in Spearwood. Credit: Ben Smith“This specific road has and will continue to be an issue until something is done.”
While the Public Transport Authority is responsible for the freight rail network, which connects South Fremantle to Rockingham and out to Perth’s eastern suburbs, day-to-day management falls to Arc Infrastructure which operates the system under a lease agreement.
An Arc Infrastructure spokeswoman said there were no plans to install more safety measures at the crossing.
“This level crossing has the highest level of protection possible (flashing lights with boom gates),” she said.
“Arc Infrastructure is not subject to the Dividing Fences Act, under the Rail Freight Systems Act, however we are currently in conversation with relevant residents to address the fencing concerns that have been brought to our attention.
“The business is reviewing the timing of works planned at this level crossing, given community concerns.”
This article first appeared on www.perthnow.com.au
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