RAIL safety experts and police are investigating after a Stroud motorcyclist was killed in a collision with a train on an unmanned level crossing.
The 37-year-old man was the last of a group of three riders to cross the Stroud - Swindon line on Sunday evening when a train heading west from Swindon collided with him at Frampton Mansell.
A member of the public and emergency services tried in vain to save his life after the collision at around 6.45pm.
The man who died was riding a road-legal Gas Gas EC300 enduro bike, said police. Contrary to earlier reports, the collision happened not on a foot crossing but one where vehicles can cross, police confirmed.
It is not yet known how the collision happened but Richard Simpson of the Trail Riders Fellowship, which campaigns for legal use of unsurfaced roads, said it can be a dangerous crossing.
“It’s a very popular route for all users,” said Mr Simpson, who said his first thoughts were with the family of the man who died. “The crossing is built up to the level of the rails with wooden sleepers which can be slippery, and before crossing, the signalman should be called and he will tell you whether it is safe to cross, and you must call him after you have crossed. Also it can be hard to hear the trains coming from Swindon as they come from a tunnel then around a bend.”
A British Transport Police spokesman said there was no suggestion that the man who died had become stuck on the crossing.
“There were two other riders who had crossed the line ahead of the man who was in collision with the train,” he said. “Officers from BTP attended the line at Frampton Mansell crossing near Stroud, on Sunday, May 11, following a report at 6.46pm that a motorbike and passenger train were in collision at the crossing.
“BTP officers attended alongside colleagues from Gloucestershire police and Great Western Ambulance Service.
“Medics treated the motorbike rider, believed to be a 37-year-old man from Stroud, at the scene but he sadly died of his injuries. The train involved was a Swindon - Gloucester service. None of the 40 passengers on board the service was injured.
"Officers are currently working to establish the full circumstances surrounding the collision and formally identify the man who died.
“The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) and The Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) have been informed.”
The Gloucestershire Coroner has been informed.