A BUNDABERG motorist came within inches of being hit by the Tilt Train at the Hinkler-Perry Sts level crossing, according to Queensland Rail.
A train driver reported there was no time to apply the emergency brakes and he barely missed the white station wagon on Friday night.
Queensland Rail acting CEO Jim Benstead said the incident could have easily ended in tragedy, adding the difference between a near miss and a fatality could be a split second.
"Drivers and pedestrians need to pay greater attention at level crossings and stop gambling with their lives, the lives of customers and train crew just to save a few minutes," he said.
"Despite the potentially deadly consequences, motorists continue to ignore flashing lights and signs. Pedestrians continue to gamble with their lives crossing tracks in front of trains.
"I shudder to think about what may have happened if the timing had been different."
Mr Benstead said the consequences of a car colliding with a passenger train could be "catastrophic".
"These incidents can have a substantial impact on our drivers. Some never recover from the stress of seeing a pedestrian or a motorist coming close to serious injury or death," he said
"There is no excuse for trying to beat a train; they can take kilometres to stop."
Reports from the site show the flashing lights were operating at the time of this incident, and Queensland Rail has reported the incident to police.
Three near misses were reported in the first six months of this year in the Wide Bay-Burnett region.
Queensland Rail has launched a new safety campaign to highlight the seriousness of drivers ignoring lights at level crossings.
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