Make rail safety part of your Go Skateboarding Day

Go Skateboarding Day (GSD) is an official annual holiday conceived by the International Association of Skateboard Companies (IASC) to promote skateboarding.” Canada is a hot spot for skateboarding, with many top-tier skaters coming from Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal. On June 21, 2014, skaters will roll out in droves and take to the streets at events in cities and towns across Canada on one of the longest days of the year to show their support for Go Skateboarding Day and their favourite activity. This makes now a good time to remind the skaters in your household to be extra cautious near any railway tracks they might encounter, not just on GSD but every day.

Set your teens up for rail safety success on GSD                 

With your teens pumped to kick-off of the summer with friends, make sure they’re set up for rail safety success before they jump on their boards and head out the door. Whether it’s scoping a new spot to skate on Go Skateboarding Day or any day, feel confident that you’ve given your teen the rail safety tools to get to their destination safely. Here are some rail safety tips for skateboarders that will help you:

Pedestrians (and skateboarders) must obey crossing laws just as drivers do

One of the most popular skateboarding activities is scoping unique skate spots to get the perfect photo or video sequence. We have seen some disturbing trends where skaters are looking to get these shots closer to the tracks. Often they will trespass on railway property to do so. Please, drive this message home with your teen: NEVER TRESPASS ON RAILWAY PROPERTY! Let them know:
  • Railway 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—you can be subject to a warning, fine or worse. You can pay with your life!
  • Whether you are walking along the tracks, riding your skateboard or simply crossing a track at a location not identified as a crossing, YOU ARE TRESPASSING! [caption id="" align="alignright" width="357"] Photo credit:[/caption]

Save your deck and your life by using caution near the tracks

Keep in mind that skateboards have smaller wheels, which can be hazardous when around railway tracks. Let teens know that if they ignore the simple steps listed below, not only are they running the risk of losing their life but also of ruining their precious skateboard deck as the trucks, bearings and wheels can get wrecked easily by attempting to skate across the railway tracks. That will surely grab their attention
  • When using items with small or swivel wheels, such as skateboards, use extra caution at railway crossings.
  • Small wheels can get stuck in the groove designed for the railway train’s wheels. This groove is called the flange-way.
  • If possible, items with small or swivel wheels should be lifted across the flange-way; if this is not possible, they should cross only at a 90-degree angle.
  • Do not use any audio device, such as a portable radio, MP3 player or smart phone, as you approach a crossing. It will interfere with your ability to hear an approaching train. Take the time to Stop, Look and Listen.
Encourage the skaters in your family to have fun and stay rail safe out there this Go Skateboarding Day. And remember to ALWAYS: Look! Listen! Live!