This afternoon, members of MPD's TEST Unit, along with the Wisconsin Dept of Transportation, the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Railroads, the Federal Railroad Administration, Wisconsin State Patrol, and several major railroad companies, will be joining with Operation Lifesaver's "Officer on a Train."
As part of Operation Lifesaver's "See Tracks? Think Train!" initiative, TEST officers will be riding with conductors on trains this afternoon from 1:00pm to 4:00pm in order to spot railroad crossing violations by motorists and pedestrians. This operation will take place from Johnson St to Middleton and back again. The goal today is to make sure that people are being safe in railroad crossing areas. Studies show that 95% of vehicle/train collisions are due to drivers ignoring warning devices, and that a motorist is 40 times more likely to die in a crash involving a train than in a crash involving another motor vehicle (source: FRA 2014).
Remember to stop when you see a railroad crossing with its red lights flashing and/or its safety arm lowered or beginning to lower. Don't try to go around the arm or try to beat the train across the tracks. Remain stopped until the warning lights are no longer flashing and the safety arm is fully raised. And, if you come to an uncontrolled railroad crossing, make sure you stop and look in both directions to make sure that you are clear before proceeding through.
For more information on Operation Lifesaver and their "See Tracks? Think Train!" campaign, visit https://oli.org/