Railway crossings

Railway level crossings

Level crossings can be dangerous especially when there are no gates, booms or flashing lights. When approaching a crossing, look and listen for trains. Slow down to a speed which allows you to stop quickly.

Railway crossing sign with and without traffic lights ahead
Left sign: Railway crossing with traffic lights ahead. Centre & right signs: Railway crossing signs.

Gates, booms or lights

At gates, booms, or flashing lights, start to cross only when signals have stopped flashing, and when the gates or booms are fully open.

Stop signals

Stop signals at railway crossings should be obeyed because trains are fast and heavy and cannot stop quickly. Check for trains even if the lights are not flashing.

When the traffic ahead is stopped, remain behind the stop line unless there is room for you to get all the way across safely.

Left Sign: Stop before crossing. Centre sign: Stop if the red lights are flashing. Right sign: Give way at the crossing, be prepared to stop.
Left Sign: Stop before crossing. Centre sign: Stop if the red lights are flashing. Right sign: Give way at the crossing, be prepared to stop.

Crossings without signals

Take extra care where there are no gates, booms or flashing lights, particularly in the country.

Slow down, look and listen for trains in both directions. There are usually warning signs placed ahead of the crossings.

Check for other trains

If you have stopped for a train, always check that another one is not approaching the crossing before you move off. You must not drive onto a level crossing while a train is approaching.

You must stop at a crossing if:

  • There is a stop sign.
  • There is a gate or boom across the road.
  • Red lights are flashing.
  • A railway employee signals you to do so.
  • You are carrying flammable, explosive or dangerous goods. You must stop between three and 15 metres before the crossing.
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