Railways and Trains

Date: 05.08.2015     Last updated: 12.04.2018 at 15.47
A guide to filming or recording on the railways, at stations, on platforms, trains, trams and tubes, whether public transport or privately owned / operated.

What Can Go Wrong?

  • Someone could get hit by a moving train/tram/tube.
  • Someone could receive an electric shock from the third rail or overhead lines.
  • Someone could fall from the platform.
  • Someone could slip or trip at the location.

Legal/BBC Requirements

  • Obtain permission from the relevant rail authority/operator, train operating company and station manager prior to any activity occurring on railway property including taking photographs, and allow adequate time for permissions to be given.
  • Attend any induction and training required by the railway company and follow any instructions given.

Control Measures

General Controls

  • Find out about local risks and emergency procedures and communicate them to the rest of the team.
  • Request a copy of the relevant railway authorities risk assessment detailing working practices. It is likely you will also need to provide your risk assessment to them.
  • Don’t allow any equipment to come near to or in contact with any live rail or overhead power lines.
  • Don’t operate broadcast equipment out of a train window unless you have the approval of the rail and train operating company Ensure suitable communications are in place that will work at the location (e.g. in a tunnel or at an underground tube station) and speak to the railway authority to ensure the correct equipment is used.
  • Don’t allow our lights or activities distract the driver.
  • Stay clear of the platform edge and stay behind the yellow lines where they are provided.
  • Wear sensible footwear and if required by the rail company, personal protective equipment (e.g. orange high visibility jacket) Orange high visibility jackets and other PPE are available from the safety equipment stores.
  • Where possible recording area to be cordoned off.
  • Manage all cables safely and don’t block any walkways or signalling with our equipment/people.
  • Consider using a lookout (though not the supervisor) when working on or near an operational rail track.
  • If requested by rail company complete a 1 day personal track safety (PTS) course if you are going trackside.
  • Maintain safe distance from track – minimum 1.4m, more for higher speed lines.

Division Specific Issues

  • No division specific issues.

FAQs/Did You Know?

  • The tube and many railways in Southern England are powered from a third rail – touching the third rail is likely to prove fatal.

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About this site

This site describes what the BBC does in relation to managing its health, safety and security risks and is intended for those who work directly for the BBC.

It is not intended to provide instruction or guidance on how third parties should manage their risks. The BBC cannot be held liable for how this information is interpreted or used by third parties, nor provide any assurance that adopting it would provide any measure of legal compliance. More information.

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