It is hard to believe that 2022 has moved into 2023.
As we enter the second week of January 2023, we leave behind a year full of memories, challenges, and another extraordinary year of providing rail safety education to California communities.
California Operation Lifesaver (CAOL) is fortunate to have an outstanding team of Authorized Volunteer Presenters. We extend a huge thank you for their commitment to providing rail safety education. We look forward to their continued work in 2023 and are excited to grow our team as more Authorized Presenters work through the application process and join our rail safety mission.
CAOL added to the growth of or our rail safety awareness efforts with five successful digital geofencing and digital CTV/radio ad campaigns. Our educational message reached 13+ high-risk California counties. The campaigns ran in July, August, September, and November.
During California September Rail Safety Month and Rail Safety Week (9/19 -9/25), we were grateful to receive an Operation Lifesaver/Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Grant and an Operation Lifesaver/Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Grant. Utilizing these special trespassing and grade crossing grants, we were able to enhance our digital campaigns and expanded our messaging with educational rail safety ads, radio PSA’s, Video PSA’s, Digital Radio Ads, and an additional “CTV (connected TV) PSA campaign.” Thank you OLI, FRA, and FHWA!
Our 2022 rail safety presentations, events, geofence, digital, and other education and awareness campaigns increased our impact to over 15,000,000 who received our critical rail safety educational message.
We added to these efforts a special campaign asking citizens to help us save lives by choosing safety near railroad tracks. We ask them to always Respect the Rails and share rail safety messages with their loved ones. We ask them to tell 5 and ask those 5 to tell 5. It is through this grass roots, Save Lives Tell 5 Campaign that they can become rail safe communities and change dangerous behaviors.
We also included an outreach to those experiencing homelessness. We partnered with BNSF, Capitol Corridor/CCJPA, Sacramento Regional Transit (SACRT) and homeless advocates. Together we distributed our CAOL Rail Safety “Stay Off the Tracks/Respect The Rails” backpacks. These packs were filled with masks and hand sanitizers provided by SACRT. Our messages encourage our citizens to make safe decisions near tracks and trains and help us save lives.
We are grateful to all of our Rail Safety Partners; we could not do it without you. We value your partnership as we join together to change dangerous behaviors along railroad rights of way. We look forward to working with you and increasing our mutual efforts in 2023.
As CAOL analyzes our 2022 outreach, we find the combination of formats that include in-person/virtual presentations, events, and geofencing/digital CTV/radio campaigns to be critical in increasing our rail safety education. All these methods support and expand our mission to save lives.
As we look forward to the year ahead, we seek to increase not only our campaigns but to also involve our communities in promoting our Save Lives Tell 5 grass roots message. We realize that each of us needs to avoid taking dangerous chances and make the changes necessary that can finally transform our trespass and grade crossing fatalities statistics.