Spoornet to teach on railway dangers

2008-08-26 00:00

Spoornet said yesterday it will vigorously embark on campaigns targeting communities living near railway lines to create awareness of the dangers of living too close to railways.

Spokesman Sandile Simelane was responding to questions from The Witness following the death of an 18-month-old toddler who died after being hit by a train near Balgowan on Monday. The boy’s playmate, a two-year-old, was seriously injured.

Simelane said that other measures undertaken include fencing some of the railway lines near human settlements.

“However, we always encounter problems as people dismantle such fences …”

Simelane said that while there are existing educational campaigns being undertaken by Spoornet, “numerous others are in the pipeline”.

The company currently has a two-pronged approach, with one targeting communities while the other schoolchildren.

“We also have created a cartoon character, Captain Track, who seems to be popular among children,” he added.

He said these programmes are already bearing fruit.

“Statistics show that last year we had 14% fewer deaths compared to the previous year.”

Simelane stressed the importance of communities getting involved. “Parents and child-minders also need to be more vigilant about where children are playing,” he said.

Hayden Soobramoney, the chairman of Mpofana (Mooi River), has also called on Spoornet and the Mpofana Municipality to ensure that the tracks passing through Mooi River are fenced.


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