Rail chiefs resort to shock tactics with graphic video of injuries

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RAIL bosses are warning Wearside children to stay away from train lines with the release of a hard-hitting video.

Shocking new figures reveal six out of 10 parents in the North East haven’t discussed railway safety with their children, according to a survey.

A youth balances between the overhead lines in Sunderland. The power was turned off at the time.

A youth balances between the overhead lines in Sunderland. The power was turned off at the time.

Fifty-five per cent of mums and dads in the region also don’t realise that the electric current on the lines is always turned on.

To combat the problem of children going onto rail lines, Network Rail’s powerful video hopes to highlight the dangers they can encounter.

It contains graphic images of those who have suffered horrific burns and features a skin biology specialist and an electrical engineer.

Dyan Crowther, Network Rail’s director of operational services, said: “As our video shows, receiving an electric shock is horrific and could affect you for the rest of your life, if you’re lucky not to be killed.

“Our community safety teams work tirelessly with young people across Britain to warn them of the dangers and encourage them to get involved in safer and more positive activities.

“However, we are concerned that many parents are very much in the dark about the dangers of trespassing or playing near the railway.

“Even though the majority of trespassers aren’t hurt, these crimes are not harmless and can result in huge delays and costs.

“We hope that by getting out this stark warning we can help banish the myths about rail safety and ultimately save lives.”

The police are also hoping to educate youngsters about the extreme dangers that come with playing near rail lines.

Between April 2010 and March this year, there were a recorded total of 47 trespass and vandalism incidents in Tyne and Wear, compared with 81 in County Durham.

Pc Steve Wareing, British Transport Police’s schools education officer, said: “The railway is such as dangerous environment. Trains cannot stop quickly or swerve and are often not seen or heard until it is too late.

“I cannot emphasise strongly enough the dangers associated with this type of crime.

“One of the worst jobs a police officer has to do is break it to a parent that their child has been seriously injured, disfigured for life or killed. It’s so unnecessary.

“A little thought by parents and carers will save us having to make that painful visit.”