Rail Safety Week Observance Going Virtual in 2020 – California Rail Safety Month Continues September 1 – 30

Public urged to help #STOPTrackTragedies – Help Raise Awareness #SaveLivesTell5

Sacramento, CA, September 21, 2020 – Every year, 2,100 North Americans are killed or seriously injured when they engage in unsafe behavior around tracks and trains. California Operation Lifesaver (CAOL) observes Rail Safety Month during the month of September, as proclaimed by the California State Legislature in 2009. 

During the week of September 21 -27, CAOL joins Operation Lifesaver Inc. (OLI), Operation Lifesaver Canada and the Mexican Association of Railroads (AMF) to observe Rail Safety Week in North America.

“Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year Rail Safety Week will emphasize virtual activities and social media to share our lifesaving messages,” said California Operation Lifesaver Executive Director, Nancy Sheehan.

We are kicking off the week today with a Rail Safety Week Blog and recognizing the cities and counties in California who have supported Rail Safety Month and/or Rail Safety Week with proclamations since 2009. We also will connect with our California communities virtually by sharing rail safety messages about making safe choices around trains and tracks.”

In 2019, in California, 408 people were killed or injured in grade crossing and trespassing incidents. California Operation Lifesaver works with Operation Lifesaver, Inc. (OLI) and all our Rail Safety Partners to prevent these needless incidents from happening.

As part of Rail Safety week, OLI is releasing new video and audio public service announcements (PSAs) in their ongoing public awareness campaign aimed at saving lives near railroad tracks. The campaign, called #STOPTrackTragedies, features videos with personal stories of people directly affected by rail crossing or trespassing incidents including victims, friends and family members, locomotive engineers, and first responders. The full campaign can be viewed at oli.org/stop-track-tragedies.

In California, and across the U.S., along with the PSAs and a social media campaign, the following themes will be emphasized throughout September Rail Safety Month and during Rail Safety Week

CAOL is running Digital Rail Safety Ad Campaigns in 13 high incident counties to raise Rail Safety Awareness about the dangers of Trespassing and dangerous behaviors around highway rail grade crossings.

Partners across the State joined together during Rail Safety Month and Week to promote: #RailSafetyPartners #RaisingAwarness to #SaveLives”

On Tuesday, September 22 CAOL will join in the focus of Law Enforcement and First Responder Partnerships through virtual and social media messaging as part of the fourth annual observance of Operation Clear Track, emphasizing the importance of obeying crossing safety and anti-trespass laws.

– We emphasize Crossing Safety with outreach to professional drivers on safe crossing techniques and by highlighting the blue and white emergency notification system (ENS) signs at crossings. Including virtual outreach and presentations

CAOL will join with our partners across the state to promote rail safety via their campaigns as well as our own efforts to enhance our mutual commitment to change dangerous behaviors along railroad rights of way

– On Friday’s in September, culminating on September 25, we invite partners, organizations, communities, and individuals to join in by Wearing Red for “Red Out” for Rail Safety to show support for safety near tracks and trains.

We are committed to highlighting Trespass Prevention to educate pedestrians about the dangers posed by being on or near the tracks. Including an outreach and distribution of safety supplies and messages for the homeless.

We will emphasize No Photos on Tracks messaging underscoring the risks of illegally taking photos, videos, or filming on train tracks for professional and amateur photographers alike.

CAOL will join Amtrak and the Federal Railroad Administration to honor a Lodi Police Officer

During the month of September, Rail Safety Partners, Organizations, Communities, and our Social Media Followers will be asked to take our California Operation Lifesaver “Social Media Pledge” to share our #RailSafety messages to help us raise awareness and #STOPTrackTragedies to #SaveLivesTell5

Visitors to oli.org will be asked to join the virtual Rail Safety Week effort by sharing the Stop Track Tragedies videos and social media messaging using the hashtags #STOPTrackTragedies and #railsafetyweek.

About California Operation Lifesaver, Inc.

California Operation Lifesaver is a non-profit safety education and awareness program dedicated to ending collisions, fatalities, and injuries at highway-rail grade crossings and on railroad rights of way in the State of California. We are committed to raising rail safety awareness to change dangerous behaviors to help save lives. Follow CAOL on: Facebook Instagram, Twitter Blog

About Operation Lifesaver, Inc.

Operation Lifesaver is a nonprofit public safety education and awareness organization dedicated to reducing collisions, fatalities and injuries at highway-rail crossings and preventing trespassing on or near railroad tracks. A national network of trained volunteers gives free presentations on rail safety and a public awareness campaign, “See Tracks? Think Train!” provides tips and statistics to encourage safe behavior near the tracks. Learn more about Rail Safety Week; follow OLI on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube. [add any state website and social media links as needed]. 

About Operation Lifesaver Canada

Operation Lifesaver Canada is a national public rail-safety program sponsored by Transport Canada, the Railway Association of Canada, and its members, including CN, CP, VIA Rail, Metrolinx, exo, West Coast Express and Genesee & Wyoming, among others. Through its national network of Rail Safety Ambassadors, partnerships with safety councils, police, the trucking industry and community groups, and innovative tools such as its virtual-reality Look. Listen. Live. campaign, Operation Lifesaver Canada works to save lives by educating Canadians about the hazards of rail crossings and trespassing on railway property. Canadians can follow OL Canada on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and keep up-to-date on the latest rail safety news by visiting operationlifesaver.ca.

About the Mexican Association of Railroads (AMF)

The Asociación Mexicana de Ferrocarriles, AC (AMF) was established in 2004 to represent the country’s private railway companies and promote their activity. In 2008 passenger rail companies joined the AMF. Learn more at https://amf.org.mx/ and follow AMF on Twitter.

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