Mother of rail victim backing campaign to cut track deaths

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The mother of a teenager killed on the railway is backing a campaign to stop people dicing with death and trespassing on the tracks.

Wendy Smith, whose 15-year-old son Ricky was killed on the railway line in Halton Moor, Leeds, in 1997, spoke out as it was revealed that 48 people who trespassed on the railway in Yorkshire last year were involved in a near-miss with a train.

She said: “My message is really simple – no matter how much time you think a shortcut will save you or how much your mates are saying it’s ok, do not go onto the railway tracks.”

Network Rail issued shocking CCTV images yesterday showing a woman jumping off a platform at Leeds station, falling over as a train approaches, before being rescued by a fellow passenger.

Speaking at Leeds station yesterday, Phil Verster, route managing director for Network Rail, said: “Shortcuts cut short lives.”

There were 24 reports of trespass in the west of the county, 13 in the south, six in North Yorkshire and five in the east.

World 400m hurdles champion Dai Greene features in a new video showing the dangers of taking shortcuts across the railway tracks.