Operation Lifesaver, Inc. (OLI), in partnership with the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), announced that $200,525 in grants will be awarded to 15 state Operation Lifesaver programs for a variety of rail crossing safety and trespass prevention public education projects, many of which will be conducted in conjunction with the nonprofit safety group’s observance of Rail Safety Week, Sept. 21-27, 2020.
The FRA grants will be awarded to Operation Lifesaver state programs in California, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, and Tennessee; North Carolina will receive partial funding for its grant project from FRA. Individual grant awards will range from $4,500 to $20,000.
To supplement the FRA awards, $45,000 in funding from the Posner Foundation of Pittsburgh will go toward Operation Lifesaver state grant projects in three additional states—Arizona, Texas and Washington—and provide the balance of funding for North Carolina’s grant project.
The approved grants were awarded through a competitive process, with selection based on criteria such as successfully leveraging the federal funds with private partnerships, targeted messaging and states with an increased number of pedestrian-train incidents and highway-rail collisions.
“These grant awards will support strategic rail safety education efforts in 18 states, with a goal to further support Operation Lifesaver’s mission of eliminating collisions, injuries and deaths at crossings and along rail property,” said OLI Executive Director Rachel Maleh. “Thanks to our ongoing partnerships with the Federal Railroad Administration and the Posner Foundation of Pittsburgh, we are able to reach more people with lifesaving rail safety messages in many states where the highest number of incidents occur.”
“The FRA is pleased to work with our safety partners at Operation Lifesaver on these grant projects, which will advance our shared goal of deterring and preventing train-vehicle and train-pedestrian incidents,” said James Payne, Staff Director of the FRA Grade Crossing Safety and Trespass Prevention Program Division.
“The Posner Foundation of Pittsburgh strongly supports OLI’s lifesaving mission, and we are privileged to assist with funding these state grant projects,” said Henry Posner III.