Onboard driver CCTV has caught the moment a man narrowly missed being hit by a train on the West Coast main line.
Network Rail and Avanti West Coast have released the video of the near miss at a footpath level crossing near Runcorn as a safety warning to others.
The entrance to the footpath crossing displays a red warning light when it is unsafe to cross, which the man ignored.
The alarming footage shows the pedestrian coming within feet of a high-speed train before the London Euston to Glasgow service was forced to come to an emergency stop.
The maximum speed for trains on this section of line is 125mph.
The incident, at 10:43am on 18 January, has been described by senior railway staff as one of the closest near misses they’ve seen.
Lucy Jordan, Network Rail’s North West head of safety, said: “When I see footage like this it always make my heart stop. The difference of just a few seconds could have led to tragedy for this man and I can’t downplay the danger he was in.
“It’s important for Network Rail to share this video as a strong warning to others and to remind them of our level crossing rules. No matter how well you think you know a crossing, all users must obey the signage in place and if there are warning lights, always stop when they display red, it just isn’t worth the risk.”
Dave Whitehouse, Avanti West Coast safety and security director, said: “This footage serves as a stark reminder to be aware of your surroundings near the railways whether it’s at a level crossing or at a station. Although the man involved escaped serious injury, this shows it’s only takes a split second to make the wrong decision for it to end in tragedy.”
After releasing the video, Network Rail has reissued its guidance on how to use level crossings safely as a pedestrian.