SAFETY AT CROSSINGS: Bundaberg Sugar’s cane supply manager Rob Powell is urging motorists to keep an eye open for cane trains this season. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail
SAFETY AT CROSSINGS: Bundaberg Sugar’s cane supply manager Rob Powell is urging motorists to keep an eye open for cane trains this season. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail

Stay safe around cane trains this season

BUNDABERG drivers are being warned of cane trains having an increasing presence around the region in the lead up to the crushing season.

Bundaberg Sugar's cane supply manager, Robert Powell said it was important for members of the public to understand the harvest season brings with it a lot of movement across the cane rail network.

He said each year the train drivers experience many near misses where motorists try to race the trains at level crossings.

"Our trains operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week from July to December," he said.

"Motorists should not be fooled by the speed of a cane train and must realise that it can't stop quickly.

"A cane train fully loaded can weigh in excess of 400 tonnes and takes more than a kilometre to stop."

Mr Powell said all Bundaberg Sugar's locomotive's had been fitted with camera's looking forward and backwards on the tracks as well as inside the cabin.

"After trials last year, this year Bundaberg Sugar has fitted cameras to all locomotives in the fleet," he said.

"This provides valuable information if a near miss or an incident occurs."

Bundaberg Police Acting Sergeant Annette Pfingst said many motorists don't realise failing to stop or give way at the signage situated at a level crossing is a traffic infringement. "Whether level crossings have flashing lights or signage only, motorists must be vigilant and drive to the conditions, slowing down and obeying the signals," she said.

Motorists could receive a $400 traffic infringement notice and three demerit points for offences including failing to stop or give way at a level crossing and entering a level crossing while warning lights or bells are operating.