Attention wedding photographers! Don’t turn their big day into their last day!

It’s summer wedding season! If you’re a wedding photographer, it’s your goal to perfectly capture the special moments of the happy couple’s most memorable day – a task made even tougher by the need to master their wish list of “ideal shots”! But at what cost? A disturbing trend we’ve seen time and time again is photos of newly married couples posing on active train tracks. Many photographers don’t even know this is illegal. By attempting to get this enticing train track “shot”, you and your clients are not only putting yourselves in great danger but are also at risk of facing legal action. Need more convincing? Consider these rail safety facts:
  • Trains can’t stop quickly to avoid people or vehicles on the tracks. An average freight train travelling at 100 km/h requires about 2 km to stop. A passenger train travelling at 160 km/h requires about the same distance to stop. Compare that to an automobile travelling at 90 km/h, which requires about 60 metres to stop.
  • Railroad tracks and bridges are private property, and any unauthorized person who is on railway property which is not designated as a crossing, is committing an offence under the law. Too often the penalty paid is death.
  • No tracks should be assumed to be abandoned or inactive.
  • Too many people have been killed while trespassing on train tracks in Canada. Read their real life stories.
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300"] Photo credit: Claims Journal[/caption]

How to meet your clients’ needs without compromising their rail safety

In a previous series on this blog we asked two professional photographers if the risk of shooting on the tracks is worth it and got their take on how to meet a client’s expectations without compromising their safety. Here are some of their tips:
  • Talk about safety first and let your clients know it’s illegal to shoot on train tracks.
  • Have an awesome location prepared that isn’t on train tracks.
  • Remember:  there is always something new and unique ready to be captured behind the lens, and it’s up to you to convey that to your client.
Need more information about what it means to be rail safe? You don’t have to look any further than Operation Lifesaver as your go-to source for rail safety resources. We are here to help you inform clients as to why the risk of getting that alluring “train track shot” far outweighs the benefits. Don’t let the most important day of their lives be ruined by one easily prevented error in judgement. Have a rail safe and successful wedding season!