All Aboard for Rail Safety Week

Ottawa - Operation Lifesaver, in cooperation with Transport Canada, the Railway Association of Canada and their partners, will begin the 2008 Rail Safety Week today on April 28. It’s a national effort to promote safe decisions around highway-railway crossings and operations. “We are very excited to be kicking off this annual Rail Safety Week,” said Dan Di Tota, Operation Lifesaver national director. “Rail safety is a very important message to bring to Canadians and we have seen first-hand how Canadians can make a difference.” Crossing collisions decreased 19 per cent from 248 in 2006 to 209 in 2007, said Mr. Di Tota. Since 1981, highway-railway crossing collisions have decreased 75 per cent and trespassing incidents decreased by 44 percent. Mr. Di Tota said. “But our work is not done. Almost all of these incidents can be avoided with the right education and greater caution.” More than 300 locations will participate in this year’s Rail Safety Week, reflecting the importance of the railways and municipalities working together to address safety issues. As railway operations and communities both grow, it has become more important to cooperate and assist one another in safety initiatives. Rail Safety Week will include a number of different events, including mock collisions, interactive kiosks, and the broadcast of public service announcements on radio and television across Canada. There will be driver education classes for new motorists and advanced training for commercial truck drivers. Crossing safety blitzes and trespass enforcement will also take place at several locations. Contact Information: Dan Di Tota Operation Lifesaver 613-564-8094 Roger Cameron Railway Association of Canada 613-564-8097 Ian Carter Transport Canada 613-990-1103