Barrington Hills promotes awareness during Rail Safety Week
It actually takes more than a mile for an engineer to stop a moving train — and the Barrington Police Department wants to heighten residents’ alertness during Illinois Rail Safety Week.
To encourage safety in and around the vicinity of railway crossings during the state’s third Rail Safety Week, the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police is widely publicizing this even and related safety tips of which drivers and pedestrians may not be aware.
As well as the fact that a moving train must travel the length of 20 football fields to brake, Operation Lifesaver — an educational initiative by the State of Illinois aimed at reducing rail-intersection crashes, injuries and deaths — lists important criteria to remember in protecting yourself and your vehicle.
First, perception is critical for a safe outcome near railroad tracks. Trains outweigh cars by at least 100-to-1, and because of their size, appear to be moving more slowly than they are to motorists and walkers. When warning signals begin flashing at an intersection, the train will reach the crossing in as little as 20 seconds.
Pedestrians are cautioned to remove headphones while crossing a rail intersection, and bicyclists are urged to dismount and walk their bikes across the tracks. Additionally, most train collisions occur at speeds slower than 30 mph. Finally, citizens are asked to pay close attention at night and in inclement weather near tracks.
“By staying out of the path of oncoming trains, we will all live longer and more productive lives,” Operation Lifesaver said on its website, https://oli.org. “Each year in Illinois, approximately 80 people die on and around railroad tracks and property.”