Published on : Wednesday, September 28, 2016
WNew figures from Network Rail¹ reveal that almost a third (29%) of young adults admit to using their mobile phone while crossing the railway. A further two thirds (66%) also report using their phone when catching or getting off a train or tube.
The problem isn’t just on the railway either, with nearly two thirds (63%) of under 25 year olds admitting they use their mobile when crossing a road. Almost half (48%) report a near miss or accident when using their mobile phone around the transport network.
The Populus research on phone distraction also highlights that one in three young adults admit they would be more aware of their surroundings if they ditched their phone for 24 hours. Most spend time checking social media (63%) and surfing the web (44%).
While Britain still has the safest rail network in Europe, level crossings are one of the biggest public safety risks on the railway. In the last five years there have been more than 2,000 incidents on level crossings involving young people².
Allan Spence, head of public and passenger safety at Network Rail, explains: “Many people are aware of the issue of mobile phone distraction for drivers, but it is very worrying that so many young adults admit to putting themselves at unnecessary risk by using their phone when crossing the railway.
“We are investing more than £100m to improve level crossing safety across Britain as part of the Railway Upgrade Plan, but we also need everyone who uses level crossings to do their bit too. By paying attention to the warnings at level crossings and avoiding distractions, we can all keep ourselves out of harm’s way.”
Network Rail’s army of over 100 level crossing and community safety managers will be raising awareness of rail safety by holding safety events and encouraging young people to stay alert when on the rail network.A huge 95 per cent of under 25 year olds report owning a smart phone and spend twice the amount of time on their mobile than the average user.