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Freight Rail Industry: Grade Crossing Safety Is on All of us

International Level Crossing Awareness Day Reminds the Public about the Dangers of Grade Crossings


WASHINGTON, D.C. – June 2, 2016 – The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today joins with the rail transportation community from more than 40 countries in calling for increased education about and attention to the dangers surrounding level crossings, also known as grade crossings, during the 9th annual International Level Crossing Awareness Day (ILCAD).  Such heightened focus is particularly important as schools across the U.S. close for the summer and travel season heats up. 

"For the freight rail industry, there is no higher priority than safety," said AAR President and CEO Edward R. Hamberger. "While federal data shows that grade crossing fatalities have been trending downward, there are still far too many fatalities that occur in and around crossings and the overwhelming majority of them are preventable. As the industry continues to focus on making level crossings safer, it also supports critical initiatives like International Level Crossing Awareness Day, which draw people's attention to the dangers of grade crossings and raise awareness about how to stay safe near tracks."

4 Things to Know on International Level Crossing Awareness Day

  • 95% of all rail-related deaths involve drivers going through a crossing or a person on the tracks
  • It can take more than a mile to stop a train.
  • The force of a train hitting a car equals the force of your car crushing a soda can.
  • Always stop, look, and listen when approaching tracks.

"When you see railroad track, automatically think train," added Hamberger. "We all have a role to play in keeping our communities safe."

The ILCAD Campaign was established in 2009 by the international railroad community in conjunction with various highway organizations, the European Commission and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), to raise awareness among road users and pedestrians of the risks at grade crossings.

For more information on International Level Crossing Awareness Day, please go to www.ilcad.org. For information on what role Operation Lifesaver plays in rail safety education, please visit http://oli.org/. For information on the "See Tracks? Think Train!" campaign, please visit http://seetracksthinktrain.org/.


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For more information contact: AAR Media Relations at media@aar.org or 202-639-2345.

About AAR: The Association of American Railroads (AAR) is the world's leading railroad policy, research and technology organization focusing on the safety and productivity of rail carriers. AAR members include the major freight railroads of the U.S., Canada and Mexico, as well as Amtrak. Learn more at www.aar.org.

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