Safety Near Trains
Rail Safety Toolkit
Safety is our priority at NCTD. During the month of September, our Rail Safety campaign is intended to educate the public to help avoid accidents and/or injuries while on or around train tracks.
There are some startling statistics around rail incidents. In the U.S., a person or vehicle is hit by a train every three hours. California continues to have one of the highest numbers of trespassing and rail-related deaths in the nation. In 2022 alone, there were 256 rail incidents in the state, of which, 97 resulted in injury and 159 were fatal.
These incidents could have been avoided by following rail safety practices.
Download our rail safety toolkit here!
Follow these Rail Rules for Rail Safety:
Look, listen & live
- Be alert – it’s difficult to judge train distance and speed.
- Look both ways – trains may come from either direction at any time.
- Listen for train horns and bells.
- Don’t use cell phones. Do remove ear buds.
Tracks are for trains
- Don’t walk, bike, skateboard, jog or play on or near the tracks
- Don’t take shortcuts across the tracks.
- Don’t lean over railings. Trains can overhang tracks by three feet on each side.
- Don’t cross between, under or walk around a parked train. It may move without warning.
- Always use crosswalks and obey all traffic signs, signals and crossing gates.
- Trains always have the right of way.
- Never walk around or under rail crossing gates.
On the platform
- Hold small children by the hand while on the platform.
- Warning strips are located at the edge of station platforms. Stay behind at all times.
Other Important Rail Safety Information
- Trains are bigger, quieter and faster than you think
- Railroad tracks and the area around them are private property. Being on and near the tracks is dangerous and illegal.
- Trains cannot stop quickly. It can take the average freight train traveling 55 MPH a mile or more to stop – the length of 18 football fields.
- Trains always have the right-of-way. Only trains belong on tracks.
- On train bridges there is only room for the train
- Trains overhang tracks by at least three feet on each side
When you see tracks, always think train!
Stay off, stay away, and stay safe.