Chris Cairns Foundation (now TrackSAFE NZ)

In 1993 a cement truck failed to stop at a level crossing near Rolleston in Canterbury, and collided with a passenger train.

The collision had catastrophic consequences, killing three women and seriously injuring seven others.  One of the women who died was nineteen year old Louise Cairns, sister of former international test cricketer Chris Cairns. 

In the years that followed Louise's death, Chris Cairns wanted to do something in her memory.  He also wanted to reduce the number of level crossing incidents in New Zealand.  Chris' motivation also came from the concern he felt for the victims of collisions and their families, as well as the locomotive engineers (train drivers).

When Chris retired from international cricket in 2006 he established the Chris Cairns Foundation - a charitable trust to raise public awareness about rail safety.  This video was put together at the launch of the Chris Cairns Foundation, in memory of Louise and the other victims of level crossing collisions.

Since Louise Cairns' death, over 130 people have lost their lives at level crossings.

"I really want the Foundation to make a difference with rail safety in New Zealand.  I am committed to ensuring that people understand their responsibilities at level crossings and will work towards bringing rail safety incidents to zero" (Chris Cairns)

In 2008 Chris Cairns walked from Kaitaia in the far North to Rolleston in Canterbury to raise awareness about rail safety.

In 2013 the Chris Cairns Foundation formally amalgamated with TrackSAFE Foundation in Australia.


KiwiRail is the state-owned enterprise that runs an integrated transport network system in New Zealand.  It operates freight trains, the Interisland ferries, Wellington passenger trains and the Tranz Scenic passenger services. 

KiwiRail works positively and collaboratively with TrackSAFE NZ on rail safety related issues and activities and currently funds TrackSAFE NZ, together with the NZ Transport Agency and Transdev Auckland.

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