In a unique alignment of corporate cultures, CSX Transportation and Toyota Racing Development (TRD), a subsidiary company of Toyota Motor Corporation, have joined forces to bring CSX’s Play it Safe railroad safety campaign to an expanded audience of racing fans. This partnership has been particularly impactful at the local level, allowing CSX to engage local communities about the importance of making good decisions when on or around railroad tracks and equipment.
“CSX became involved with NASCAR in 2008, giving our Play It Safe initiative national exposure. Between racing’s passionate fans and its strong media presence, our safety message has reached an audience we couldn’t imagine not having today.” says Quintin Kendall, Vice President of State Government and Community Affairs at CSX. “Our work with TRD is another extension of our Play It Safe initiative where we’ve engaged with great people, shaking hands and having conversations about how important it is to use caution around railroad tracks.”
This season, CSX has six primary sponsorships in place at some of the nation’s premier short-track races, such as Indiana Midget Week in Putnamville, IN and The Snowball Derby in Pensacola, FL. Thousands of fans were exposed to CSX safety messaging first-hand through interactive booths and trackside signage, while some of TRD’s most up-and-coming drivers, like Todd Gilliland and Christopher Bell, represented CSX on their cars. Additionally, the Toyota Tundra safety trucks that work these races have been branded with a Play It Safe and TRD design and will be featured at 80 races.
“At CSX and TRD, safety never stops,” says Jack Irving, Director of Team and Support Services. “That’s what makes it so great to work with CSX. We both share a passion for safety, and that message aligns perfectly with the communities we interact with every day.”
At CSX, safety will always be our first priority. Every year throughout the United States, thousands of avoidable incidents occur at highway-rail grade crossings and along railroad right-of-way. Fortunately, both CSX and TRD remain unwavering in their commitment to raise public awareness about how to Play It Safe around railroad tracks, and they are already looking ahead to 2017, when many more exciting and innovative steps will be taken to help save lives.