Stop tragic incidents involving mobility device users and trains

People who use wheelchairs or other mobility devices face plenty of challenges getting from place to place. There are daily obstacles like getting on and off curbs, in and out of buildings or even in and out of doors. Unfortunately, train tracks can also can be a serious challenge for mobility device users.
Wheeled mobility devices can get caught and stuck in the tracks, with tragic consequences. In May, a man in a wheelchair was hit and killed by a train in Chilliwack, B.C. when his tires became stuck in the tracks. Two women tried to help him but could not get him free.
Just last month, an elderly man on a mobility device died after he was hit by a train at a rail crossing in Camrose, Alberta. Witnesses say the signal crossing lights and bells were activated and the train sounded its whistle, but it was unable to avoid hitting the man.
Let’s work together to try to stop tragedies like these from happening. If you use a wheelchair or mobility device, following these rules will help ensure you get where you are going safely:
  • Cross railway tracks only at designated crossings where the tracks are level with the ground. You could get stuck or fall trying to cross tracks at any other place, which could be deadly.
  • Stop, look both ways and listen for approaching trains at a crossing; proceed only if you are sure it is safe to do so.
  • Plan your crossing and cross the tracks at a 90-degree angle, or as close to it as possible.
  • Proceed with caution. Metal tracks can be slippery, especially when wet or in snowy conditions; the wheels of your mobility device could skid if you cross too fast or don’t cross at a right angle.
  • Call for help from passing pedestrians, cyclists or motorists if your mobility device breaks down or gets stuck at a railway crossing. Get assistance getting out of your device and to a safe distance from the tracks.
Help us save lives. Share these safety tips and go to our Resource page for more simple steps for staying rail safe.