By Richard Ashmore
This is the moment a trespassing motorcyclist who had fallen off his bike on a railway track was almost crushed to death by a 100mph train.
The heart-in-the-mouth moment was caught on the dash cam of the V/Line train on a stretch of track last month near Ballan, west of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
The man had been pushing a trail bike across the tracks when it fell over and as this footage shows he was forced to leap away from certain death as the train thundered past.
It was one of nearly 300 near hits reported on V/Line network the train operator said in the past year that have forced drivers to take evasive action such as sounding the whistle or applying emergency brakes when sighting people on or near the tracks.
V/Line CEO James Pinder said the video underlines the risk to life and limb of trespassing on railway property.
He said: “Our trains travel at up to 160 kilometres per hour, and many new services have been added to our timetable in the past two years – with more to come.”
“Trains approaching at high speed are quieter than expected – and it can take nearly a kilometre for a train to stop once the driver applies the brakes.”
“The possible effects can be traumatic for staff, customers and members of the community, and cause disruption to services on the rail network.
“When people are reported on the tracks, V/Line often stops trains running in both directions, which can cause lengthy delays for our customers.
“I’d encourage people to only cross railway lines at marked crossings, respect all warning signs and always look both ways as trains can come from either direction.”