Learn the simple ways to be rail safe

Courtesy photo (Tri Rail)

For many, riding the train like Tri-Rail to work, school or play is a part of daily living.

For others, driving, walking or biking which requires crossing rail tracks is a regular activity. We all want to get to wherever life takes us as safe as possible. During Rail Safety Week, Sept. 19-25, or any other time, it is important to respect the rails and follow simple steps.

Not only does Tri Rail offer an alternative to driving, but it also is big on safety for the community, because knowing how to properly navigate railroads can save lives. To help lessen that risk, here are some facts, dos and don’ts of rail safety, according to Tri Rail.

Facts

  • Some trains can travel up to 80 mph.
  • Trains overhang the tracks by at least three feet in both directions, so if you are in the right-of-way next to the track, you can be hit by the train.
  • It takes more than a mile for some trains to stop.
  • An approaching train may be closer and traveling faster than it appears.
  • Tresspassing is the leading cause of railroad-related deaths.
  • Tresspassing is against the law on any railroad facility and has fines as well as jail time.
  • Flashing red lights indicate a train is approaching, do not cross the tracks until the lights have stop flashing and it’s safe to do so.

Dos

  • Stay behind the stop line or gate while waiting for the train to pass.
  • Wait for the gates to go up completely before crossing.
  • Look both ways to ensure there are no other trains coming.
  • Use sidewalks or other designated crossings.
  • Obey all signals and warning signs.

Don’ts

  • Go around or under the gates when they go down.
  • Stop on the tracks.
  • Take shortcuts along or over the tracks. This is tresspassing.
  • Talk on the phone, text or listen to your headphones when crossing the tracks.
  • Extend your arms, legs or any other body part past the gates or stop bar.
  • Selfie and photo shoots on train tracks are illegal and can have deadly consequences.

With more people getting back to work again and tourists traveling here for the upcoming winter, traveling across the region by rail might be a more desirable option than ever.

It certainly is the way to go with fares as low as $5 to save money on gas and wear-and-tear on a car. Plus, when you ride Tri-Rail, you can now benefit from free shuttle, taxi and uber connections from select train stations.

Visit this website for more information on rail safety, and to also view stops and schedules for Tri Rail.