Rail safety the focus of Operation Lifesaver in Tuscumbia

TUSCUMBIA, Ala. – A day focused on railroad safety for drivers is planned in the city of Tuscumbia.

When it comes to vehicle collisions and fatalities, Alabama is among the worst. Across the state there are more than 3,500 miles of train tracks. Those tracks create more than 6,000 vehicle crossings.

The staff at Operation Lifesaver has made it their mission to reduce the number of railway collisions. June has been designated as Railroad Safety Month.

Nancy Hudson, Operation Lifesaver - Alabama

“More crashes happen at crossings that have signals and gates. Because you see the gates start down and your going to think no I don’t have time for this. So they try to beat the train. The problem with that is even if it’s a tie, you lose,” stated Nancy Hudson, Coordinator for Operation Lifesaver in Alabama.

Operation Lifesaver said Alabama is currently ranked eighth across the nation in the number of collisions involving cars and trains. The state also ranks number eight in the number of fatalities which come from vehicle-train collisions. A growing statistic, the number of people killed while walking on tracks.

“We have work to do, and we need to remind people that every time they see tracks to think train,” explained Hudson.

Hudson said the best piece of safety equipment at a railroad crossing – is the driver of the vehicle. They are focused, they are paying attention, and they make the right choice.

A Railroad Safety and Safety Expo is scheduled for June 10th at the Tuscumbia Depot. Operation Lifesaver said there will be train rides and entertainment from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and is free to the public.