Metra is joining a national effort to raise awareness and stress the importance of safe behavior near the railroad tracks, as the U.S., Canada and Mexico observe Rail Safety Week in North America, Sept. 21-25.
“Metra has a long history of being extremely active in railroad safety education efforts through its participation in Operation Lifesaver,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “The goal is to bring awareness to the public through education designed to reduce and eliminate injuries and fatalities that occur at highway-rail grade crossings and along the railroad rights-of-way.”
In 2019 alone, 807 people were injured, and 294 people lost their lives in the U.S. in collisions at railroad crossings, according to statistics compiled by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). In Illinois, 30 people died in 2019 when they were struck by trains while trespassing on railroad property and 21 people died in 2019 when they were struck by trains at a highway-rail crossing.
As part of this week-long campaign, the Metra Police Department released a PSA reminding the public of the dangers when near the railroad tracks, view here. In addition, Metra’s Safety staff will perform safety blitzes at the downtown stations: Chicago Union Station, Ogilvie Transportation Center, LaSalle Street Station, Van Buren Street Station, and Millennium Station to highlight the importance of rail safety with the public, view the full calendar here.
For more information on Rail Safety Week, please visit: https://oli.org/.