A public education campaign has launched across the United States to help save lives at railroad crossings.
Stop. Trains Can’t. is a $6.6 million campaign that will run through November 8 to warn drivers not to gamble with their lives at rail grade crossings.
Over the past five years, 798 people have died while trying to drive across railroad tracks. In 2019 alone, 126 people were killed and 635 people were injured at railroad crossings. Of those killed, about 75 percent died after the driver went around lowered crossing gate arms.
“So many fatalities at highway-railway crossings are preventable; this campaign aims to raise public awareness and save lives,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao.
In addition to radio, digital, and social media ads, the campaign will also target high-risk highway-railway crossings in Alabama, Arizona, California, Georgia, Indiana, Tennessee, and Texas.
The campaign is managed by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
“A train can’t swerve out of the way or stop on a dime,” said NHTSA Deputy Administrator James Owens. “We all have a responsibility to be safe while on the highways, and that means drivers must always look carefully before driving across train tracks and obey any warning signals or lowered crossing gate arms. Trying to beat a train could cost you your life.”