There’s nothing romantic about “riding the rails”

After almost a year-and-a-half of public health measures, travel restrictions, and lockdowns, many Canadians are eager for some adventure. But if you’re looking to add a little excitement to your life, train hopping isn’t the way to go.
Over the past year, CP Police Service has witnessed a rise in the number of train hopping incidents. The railway, along with Operation Lifesaver, wants to remind Canadians just how risky this activity is.
“CP takes the safety of the public and its employees seriously. The activity of trying to hop on board a train—moving or not—and attempting to ride that train is an extremely dangerous and illegal activity,” explains Al Sauve, CP Chief of Police Service.Trains may move at any time, and at differing speeds. Those who choose to participate in this activity may also face criminal charges under the Railway Safety Act.”
Train hopping is a dangerous game
“‘Riding the rails’ has sometimes been romanticized as a way to see the country—but there’s nothing romantic about losing life or limb in a tragic accident that is entirely preventable,” says Sauve.
Kennedy Rhodes knows just how dangerous train hopping can be. She lost her left leg when she was just 13—all because she made the dangerous decision to train-hop. On May 20, 2016, she was with some friends in Calgary when she tried to jump onto a moving freight train. It was her first attempt at train hopping, and she was lucky to get away with her life.
She shared her story as part of Operation Lifesaver’s #STOPTrackTragedies campaign because she wants to prevent others from making the mistake she did.
“I don’t want somebody dying on the side of the tracks,” says Rhodes. “Having been so close to that happening for me, I care deeply that anybody could potentially go through that, or that their families could go through that.”
So, let’s make this summer a safe one. Stay off trains and tracks—because a few seconds of fun could change your life forever.