About this Article
- Location Washington, DC
In an unprecedented partnership, CSX, Operation Lifesaver, Inc., the U.S. Department of Transportation and other major railroads from across the country recently announced the launch of the Common Sense campaign, designed to reduce the number of pedestrians who are killed or injured when trespassing around tracks and trains. The campaign is directed at 18 to 34-year-olds, who make up the largest percentage of railroad-related pedestrian casualties.
The Common Sense campaign will raise awareness about the risks of trespassing on railroad property. The campaign includes an interactive website www.CommonSenseUseIt.com, internet ads, videos, and local events. Initial launch will be in areas where pedestrian rail trespass incidents are particularly frequent.
Injuries and fatalities associated with trespassing on railroad property are a significant – and growing – problem. According to Federal Railroad Administration statistics, the casualty rate for all rail trespassers rose in 2008. More than 870 people died or were injured in railroad-related trespassing incidents in 2008, and the numbers have topped 9,000 in the last ten years.
"Many Americans have no idea that walking or playing around train tracks, fishing from a railroad bridge, or riding their all-terrain vehicle on railroad tracks is potentially deadly, and always illegal," said Helen M. Sramek, president of Operation Lifesaver, Inc.
"Young adults may also be distracted by cell phones, texting, or listening to MP3 players if they're near the tracks. This new public awareness campaign has a simple message – staying away from the tracks is common sense, and it can save your life," said Cliff Stayton, CSX Director, Community Affairs & Safety and a former locomotive engineer.
"Pedestrian injuries and fatalities on railroad tracks are preventable," said CSX Corporation's CEO Michael J. Ward. "We are pleased to work with Operation Lifesaver, the FRA and our industry colleagues in this important effort."
For more information, visit www.CommonSenseUseIt.com.