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Great Coates level crossing deaths 'a tragic accident'


10 April 2013 Last updated at 13:06  from the BBC at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-humber-22090686

.Great Coates level crossing deaths 'a tragic accident'

Network Rail said it was testing the barriers and any damaged ones would be removed and replaced 

The barriers at a level crossing where two men died when a train hit their car appear to have been working correctly, police have said.

The car driver and his male passenger were killed in the crash at Great Coates, near Grimsby, in North East Lincolnshire, on Tuesday evening.

It is understood the Cleethorpes-to-Scunthorpe service was travelling at about 60mph when the crash happened.

British Transport Police said they were treating it as a "tragic accident".

The 47-year-old car driver, from Grimsby, was confirmed dead at the scene of the automated half-barrier crossing on Woad Lane, while the other, a 40-year-old man from Cleethorpes, died on the way to hospital, BTP said.

No train passengers were hurt and the service was not derailed during the crash, which happened at about 19:40 BST.

'Distressing event'
In a statement, BTP said: "Our thoughts are very much with the men's families at this very difficult time.

"We're keeping an open mind but indications so far are that the crossing was working correctly and this appears to have been a tragic accident."

 The train is thought to have been travelling at about 60mph when it hit the car
The Rail Maritime and Transport (RMT) union is urging for level crossings to be phased out urgently.

General secretary Bob Crow said: "It is clear these lethal incidents at level crossings have escalated in recent weeks and it is now urgent that we speed up the phasing out of these death traps on our railways."

Network Rail said it was testing the Woad Lane barriers and any damaged ones would be removed and replaced.

The railway line reopened on Wednesday morning although the road remained closed to traffic, Network Rail said.

First TransPennine Express, which runs the Cleethorpes-to-Scunthorpe service, said: "Our crew members reacted in a professional manner and in accordance with their safety training.

"We are in the process of debriefing them and will of course be offering any and all help that they require as a result of this distressing and highly unusual event."

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