See Tracks? Think Train! RT launches new safety campaign (1 of 2)
California safety officials are warning that there is a problem with distracted drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists being hit by commuter trains in Sacramento and many other parts of the state.
According to the rail safety group Operation Lifesaver, there were 154 people hit by trains in California last year, resulting in 101 deaths and 53 injuries.
This is close to twice as many that were hit the year before, the group’s data shows, and officials believe that the increasing number of people who are addicted to their cellphones and other devices may be to blame.
The problem is especially onerous in the Sacramento area, where the light-rail trains cross over intersections, sidewalks and streets hundreds of times per day, the Sacramento Bee reported.
The RT general manager said that as people have become more addicted to their cellphones, they are watching for trains less, and potentially putting their lives in danger.
In fact, in recent months, there have been several incidents in which pedestrians and cyclists, who were believed to have been distracted, were killed after walking out in front of light-rail trains.
In one tragic example, a 15-year-old wearing headphones crossed the tracks despite lights and bells and was struck and killed.
But it’s not just teenagers who are having a hard time focusing. It seems like members of all generations are guilty of being distracted, whether it’s by texts from friends, work emails or updating Facebook.
In order to reach as many people as possible, the Sacramento Regional Transit has launched a campaign with an important message: “See Tracks? Think Train!”
We will discuss the campaign further, as well as tips for avoiding train collisions, in our next post, so stay tuned.