Taking risks around trains isn’t cool. It’s deadly.

Trains are pretty amazing: 110 tonnes of powerful machine cruising along at up to 120 kilometres per hour. And that’s just the locomotive. No matter how fast you run, no matter how fast you drive, you can’t outrun them and you’re unlikely to survive a collision with one.

It’s Public-Rail Safety Week and Operation Lifesaver volunteers and partners are out telling Canadians about the importance of rail safety. It’s everyone’s responsibility to prevent needless deaths and injuries due to train-related incidents, but teens and new drivers in particular need to understand this important message.

A shortcut to a short life

Train tracks might seem like a good place to hang out with friends or an easy shortcut to get somewhere else. They’re not. About 70 people die every year because they thought trespassing on rail property was a good idea. That’s 70 too many. Don’t be one of them. Teens like Andrew, Ty, and Nick all died because they were struck by trains while trespassing on rail property. Sean and his friends decided to hop a slow-moving train. His friends made it. Sean didn’t and lost an arm and a leg as a result. Watch his story below.


New drivers also need to be especially vigilant around train tracks. Know the rules and know the signs and you’ll know how to stay alive. Almost all collisions between cars and trains are due to driver error. Trains always win and it isn’t a game that you’re losing. It might be a limb or it might be your life.

Here are some resources that will help teens and new drivers learn rail-safe behaviour:


This Public-Rail Safety Week, make sure the teens in your life get the message. Join the PRSW conversation on Facebook  and Twitter (@oplifesaver)—remember to tag your tweets with #prsw2013—and ask them to share how they plan to stay alert and stay alive.