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Yorkshire woman's bravey at level crossing


12:13pm 17th May 2011

A woman who risked her life to pull two drivers to safety following a crash on a level crossing as a train was approaching, has today, Tuesday 17th May 2011, been awarded the Royal Human Societies Silver medal for bravery.
32 year old taxi driver Lucy Gale from Pontefract was approaching Hensall level crossing in West Yorkshire on 27th May 2010, when she witnessed two cars obstructing the railway line following a collision.

Ms Gale saw the elderly female driver of one of the vehicles slouched over the steering wheel, and the male driver of the other car frantically trying to get out. Upon noticing a freight train approaching at speed, and without a thought for her own personal safety, Ms Gale dragged the female driver from the car and moved her to a place of safety. She then went back to the second vehicle and forced the driver’s damaged door open to free him before jumping in the car, driving it off the crossing and out of the path of the oncoming train, narrowly avoiding tragedy.

Ms Gale then assisted both the male and female casualties until the police and ambulance service arrived.

British Transport Police officer Harry Thompson was one of the first officers on the scene said:

"When I arrived at the scene I had no idea about the events that had taken place prior to the emergency services attended. As the incident unfolded I soon realised how heroic Lucy had been, and was astounded by her courage. Her level headedness and quick thinking actions helped avert a disaster. I have no doubt that if she had not pulled both people to safety and driven the car off the track this would have been a whole different story."

Superintendent Peter Mason said:

“We recommended Ms Gales for this award; her selfless bravery without a doubt saved two peoples lives on that day, and helped avoid potential tragedy for the rail staff on the train. She put her own life at risk in order to save the lives of others, making her a truly remarkable woman and very worthy of this rare accolade."

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