More Communities Join OL Canada’s Rail Crossing Safety-Awareness Program

Written by Carolina Worrell, Senior Editor
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Operation Lifesaver (OL) Canada on Sept. 21 announced that 20 additional communities have joined its “Look. Listen Live.” Community Safety Partnership Program to prevent collisions from occurring at railway crossings.

This national initiative, which is part of Rail Safety Week, OL Canada says, encourages municipalities to install bright yellow rail safety decals or signs near railway crossings; each features a silhouette of a train as well as OL’s rail safety motto, “Look. Listen. Live.” The decals and signs help to alert pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists of the need to exercise caution around railway crossings—with the aim of preventing tragic incidents from occurring.

“It’s heartbreaking to see Canadians killed or seriously injured in preventable collisions at rail crossings each year,” said OL Canada National Director Sarah Mayes. “Our hope is that these decals will act as a constant reminder for people to be extra vigilant when they’re approaching crossings.”

OL Canada’s first decals were installed in Vancouver, B.C. in 2018. Since then, close to 100 communities have signed on to the program. In the coming days, more than 200 rail safety decals and signs will be unveiled in communities from Revelstoke, B.C. to Grand Bay-Westfield, N.B.

The Community Safety Partnership Program is just one of the many ways that OL Canada is working to #STOPTrackTragedies. Earlier this week, OL unveiled two new videos that highlight the personal stories of people affected by rail crossing and trespassing incidents.

One of those videos tells the story of 16-year-old Jacob Hicks who died after he was hit by a train at a rail crossing in Oshawa, Ontario, in 2012. Hicks had been listening to music on his headphones while walking home and was looking down at his phone at the time of the incident. The crossing lights were flashing, and the bells were ringing, but Hicks didn’t see or hear the train coming. His tragic story is precisely the type of incident that OL says its Community Safety Partnership Program is aiming to prevent.

Municipalities can find out more or sign up for the Community Safety Partnership Program here.

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