Headphones and railway tracks are a deadly combination

Headphones are ubiquitous these days. In fact, it’s hard to find a young person walking around without a pair covering their ears. But headphones block out the sound of the world around us—and that can be deadly when walking near train tracks.

Last month, a 19-year-old woman was killed after being struck by a train in Banff, AB. The RCMP say that the young woman was walking along the railway tracks when she was hit by a train. They believe that she couldn’t hear the train coming because she was wearing earbuds.

You can’t avoid a train if you can’t hear it coming
Too many young people needlessly lose their lives because they trespass on railway tracks—and headphones often play a part in these tragedies.  Unfortunately, this is something Tiffany William’s family knows all too well.

In October 2014, the 16-year-old was hit and killed by a train in Maple Ridge, BC while walking along the tracks near her house. She didn’t hear the train’s whistle because she was wearing headphones. Tiffany’s story is featured in one of Operation Lifesaver’s #STOPTrackTragedies videos.

Keep #OneEarOut to stay safe

One way to prevent these tragedies is by keeping “one ear out.” A #OneEarOut campaign was started by the family of Amanda Kirchner in 2017 to encourage people to keep one ear uncovered, especially near railway tracks.

Amanda was struck and killed by a train while taking a shortcut across the tracks in Westminster, Colorado, in August 2016. She too didn’t hear the train’s whistle because she was wearing noise-cancelling headphones. She was only 20 years old.

Please make sure the people in your life know to never trespass on railway tracks and encourage them to keep one ear uncovered when wearing headphones. It’s a simple thing that could save their life.