Operation Lifesaver Canada Supports International Level Crossing Awareness Day

OTTAWA, June 6, 2011 - Operation Lifesaver, Canada’s dedicated not-for-profit organization focused on preventing accidents associated with train collisions with motor vehicles and trespassing on rail property,  is proud to support International Level Crossing Awareness Day (ILCAD) 2011 this coming Thursday, June 9th, 2011. Running under the motto “Act safely at level crossings” the 2011 ILCAD campaign is designed to raise awareness among road users and pedestrians of the risks at level crossings and to change their behaviour. More than 40 countries around the world have previously been engaged in ILCAD. “Canadian Rail has an enviable safety record that is testimony to the tremendous efforts and dedication of rail operators, their employees and volunteers to educating Canadians about safety at level crossings,” said Operation Lifesaver National Director Dan Di Tota. “During ILCAD, Operation Lifesaver partners, Railway Association of Canada members and Transport Canada, ask parents, youth, teachers, emergency response providers, and motorists to take responsibility for their safety around rail property and to learn more about common sense rail-safety.” Since 1980 the number of crossing collisions (where a train and motor vehicle collide) in Canada has fallen dramatically from over 800 annually to approximately 200 in 2010. While this reduction speaks to the success of safety efforts undertaken in that time, there still remains unnecessary loss of life and injury with 79 fatalities and 47 serious injuries occurring in 2010 as a result of crossing collisions and trespassing on rail property. Operation Lifesaver makes it easy for Canadians to learn about rail safety in just a matter of minutes. The organization has developed a wide variety of interactive educational materials available for free to the public, including:
  • An interactive site for kids, www.olkids.ca, which includes safety pamphlets, Rover the Railway Rabbit cartoons and stories, interactive videos and online activity books
  • Safety brochures for specific audiences, including parents, teachers, school bus and truck drivers, commuters, cyclists, emergency responders, and snow mobile and all terrain vehicle drivers available at www.operationlifesaver.ca
  • An interactive, online safety education site for new drivers available at www.traintodrive.net
  • Safety-related updates on Twitter (www.twitter.com/oplifesaver) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/oplifesaver)
About Operation Lifesaver Established in Canada in 1981, Operation Lifesaver is a national public-rail safety program sponsored by Transport Canada and the Railway Association of Canada. Through partnerships with provincial safety councils, police, railways, the trucking industry and community groups, Operation Lifesaver is dedicated to saving lives by educating Canadians about the hazards surrounding highway/railway crossings and trespassing on railway property. For more information please contact: Dan Di Tota Operation Lifesaver 613-564-8094 dand@railcan.ca Paul Goyette Railway Association of Canada 613-564-8097 paulg@railcan.ca