We have quite a few railroad crossings in Windsor. Here are some tips from Operation Lifesaver Inc. on railroad crossing safety:
1. Trains and cars don’t mix. Never race a train to the crossing — even if you tie, you lose.
2. Trains cannot stop quickly. Even if the engineer sees you, a freight train moving at 55 miles per hour can take a mile or more to stop once the emergency brakes are applied. That’s 18 football fields!
3. Never drive around lowered gates — it’s illegal and deadly. If you suspect a signal is malfunctioning, call the emergency number posted on or near the crossing signal or call Windsor Police.
4. Do not get trapped on the tracks; proceed through a crossing only if you are sure you can completely clear it without stopping. Remember, the train is three feet wider than the tracks on both sides.
5. If your vehicle ever stalls on the tracks with a train coming, get out immediately and quickly move away from the tracks in the direction the train is coming from. If you run in the same direction as the train, you could be injured by flying debris when the train hits your car.
6. The only safe place to cross is at a designated roadway crossing or public crossing with a railroad crossing sign, flashing red lights, or a gate. If you cross at any other place, you are trespassing and can be ticketed or fined.
7. Always expect a train. Freight trains do not follow set schedules; be alert.
(Photo: Jason Mendoza)