Considering the size and weight and speed at which trains travel, you’d think people would be more cautious around them. Unfortunately, that is not always the case: someone is hit by a train every 180 minutes in the United States, and highway-rail crossing and trespasser deaths account for 95 percent of all rail-related deaths, according to the Federal Railroad Administration. The majority of these deaths are preventable. A video taken at a Caltrain station in Redwood City underscores what not to do at train crossings.
The video shows a group of people crossing the tracks against a flashing gate in the down position as a train quickly approaches. One man barely escapes being hit.
Caltrain, a commuter rail service between San Francisco and San Mateo and Santa Clara counties, has recorded three deaths so far this year. Across the country, the FRA indicates there have been about 270 deaths a year at public and private grade crossings, with the number of deaths decreasing by 54 percent over the last two decades.
To avoid a deadly accident, Caltrain recommends staying alert and paying attention near train tracks, never going around safety gates, and watching out for a second train after the first one passes. Expect a train at anytime.
For more information on collisions at train crossings, transportation safety, and issues concerning civil law, please call 888-752-7474 or complete our online contact form.