Contest promotes safety education in nation’s rail hub
(Sept. 17, 2015) – Metra today launched the tenth edition of its annual Safety Poster and Essay Contest, asking students to illustrate through posters and essays how everyone should “Make Safety Your Focus: Look, Listen Live” when near railroad tracks and crossings.
Since 2007, Metra has been bringing safety lessons into classrooms across northeast Illinois through its Safety Poster and Essay Contest. Over the past decade, more than 28,500 students have had the opportunity to show what they’ve learned about the importance of safe behaviors around trains and railroad tracks. The contest is open to all students in grades K through 12 living or attending school in the railroad’s six-county service area. The deadline for all entries is Friday, Jan. 29, 2016.
“The Chicago area is the rail hub of North America, with trains and railroad tracks impacting nearly every community,” said Metra Executive Director/CEO Don Orseno. “The safety contest has been a valuable outreach tool to teach the children and parents of our region about the importance of respecting and staying away from railroad property. It’s a message that can’t be repeated often enough.”
Over the next few weeks, posters advertising the contest will be arriving at schools, libraries and local government centers across the region.
“Our goal is to expose more young people to the lessons of railroad safety through this contest and, ultimately, prevent unnecessary tragedies on our tracks,” Orseno said.
The Safety Poster Contest is a key part of Metra’s ongoing effort to increase public awareness about lifesaving railroad safety practices. One first-, second- and third-place winner will be selected from each grade, K through 12, and awarded the following prizes:
First Place: iPad
Second Place: $250 gift card
Third Place: $100 gift card
In addition, winning designs will be featured in Metra’s safety calendar, website, station displays and on weekend passes.
Metra will also recognize the school that submits the most entries in the 2015-2016 Safety Poster Contest by awarding it a new computer compatible with the school’s current system. Each school’s entries will be totaled after the contest deadline on Friday, Jan. 29, 2016.
Students are also encouraged to enter the 2015-2016 Metra Safety Essay Contest. Contest participants are asked to describe in 300 words or less how to “Make Safety Your Focus” when near trains and railroad tracks. First-place winners in the essay contest will also receive an iPad.
For more information about the contest rules and guidelines, as well as downloadable entry forms, logos, and poster templates, please visit the contest website here. You can even submit your completed contest entry through this site. Also, become a fan of the Metra contest Facebook page for exclusive news and announcements. Any questions about the contest or materials can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Teachers will also find useful information in the Teachers Section of the website. There they will find materials such as fact sheets, coloring pages and bulletin board displays to help them integrate railroad safety messages into their lesson plans. In addition, the site includes games and information sheets designed for parents and driver education instructors.
Metra has a long history of being extremely active in railroad safety education efforts. Operation Lifesaver is a railroad industry educational program that teaches train safety awareness. Metra has two Operation Lifesaver presenters who provide nearly 1,000 safety blitzes and safety presentations each year that stress the message “Look, listen and live” for schools, driver education programs and various community organizations. A video featuring a Metra Operation Lifesaver presentation can be found on our YouTube Channel at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W29Ce4d--LQ.