Never Play on the Train Lines

There was a story on the local BBC news the other day about a woman who had fallen over whilst crossing a railway line on a gated level crossing. To make matters worse, she managed to fall when there was a train coming.

Now before you think I’m having a go at some poor woman who’s thankful to be alive after losing two limbs in some horrific accident on a train line, I’m not. The level crossing was manned, so a real person needs to look out of the window at the track and only then let the train know it’s safe to proceed. Even the reporting journalist who would have loved a sensationalist story admitted she was in no danger whatsoever.

So let’s see what we have so far: an old woman falling over on a train track, but in reality she was in no danger whatsoever. Normally that wouldn’t even make the Hedge End Informer, but for some reason it had popped up on the 6:30pm BBC South Today news. So what gives?

Well the whole thing seems to have been her reaction to it. She was described as not wanting to use that crossing again because she was “too traumatised”. She was even “considering suing Network Rail for the cost of replacing her glasses which she broken in the fall”.

For God’s sake woman get over it! You’ve fallen over: it’s not anyone else’s fault.

It gets better though – there was the mandatory “on location” report by the poor bloke sent to cover this case. Why do you think I’m being so harsh on this woman? It’s because arching nicely over the head of the reporter in the background of the report is none other than a footbridge.

A woman (who I’ve avoided describing as elderly, because I don’t think she was that far over 60) refuses to use the supplied footbridge, falls over on the train line and all the safety procedures work fine.

I’ve no idea what the outcome of the story was (I couldn’t find it on a web page anywhere), but I hope that Network Rail told her to get lost. I’m sure £75 for new specs would hardly be missed by NR shareholders, but it’s the principle. Replacement glasses indeed.