The Great Western Railway and Operation Lifesaver remind pedestrians to follow the safety tips below when crossing railroad tracks.
- Freight trains don’t travel at fixed times. Always expect a train at each highway-rail intersection.
- The only safe place to cross railroad tracks is at a designated public crossing with either a crossbuck, flashing red lights or a gate. Never attempt to cross tracks anywhere else.
- Today’s trains are quieter than ever, producing no telltale “clackety-clack.” Any approaching train is always closer and moving faster than you think.
- It can take a mile or more to stop a train, so a locomotive engineer who suddenly sees someone on the tracks is likely unable to stop in time.
- Trains overhang the tracks on both sides; loose straps hanging from rail cars may extend even further. If you are within 50 feet of the tracks, the train can hit you.
- Do not cross the tracks immediately after a train passes. A second train might be blocked by the first. Trains can come from either direction. Wait until you can see clearly around the first train in both directions.
- Flashing red lights indicate a train is approaching from either direction. Never walk around or behind lowered gates at a crossing, and do not cross the tracks until the lights have stopped flashing and it’s safe to do so.
- Do not attempt to hop aboard railroad equipment at any time. A slip of the foot can cost you a limb or your life.
- Stay alert around railroad tracks. No texting, headphones or other distractions that would prevent you from hearing an approaching train; never mix rails and recreation.