Railroad Safety, Uncategorized

Stop. Trains Can’t – New Rail Crossing Safety Campaign Launched With Striking Video

Stop. Trains Cant
Federal Railroad Administration and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration join forces to launch a new rail crossing safety campaign

There is a reason that, by law, a train always has the right of way. You are about 40 times more likely to die in a crash with a train than with another motor vehicle. People have been injured or killed because they thought they could beat the train. You can’t always count on the railroad crossing signals to be working, so look both directions to make sure a train is not approaching……You are about 40 times more likely to die in a crash with a train than with another motor vehicle. People have been injured or killed because they thought they could beat the train. You can’t always count on the railroad crossing signals to be working, so look both directions to make sure a train is not approaching……According to the Federal Railroad Administration, there were there were  2,105 collisions, 274 Fatalities and 807 injuries at railroad crossings in 2017, with 274 people killed. According to federal data, a person or vehicle is hit by a train in the United States approximately every three hours. Due to their sheer size trains appear to be slow, but they are deceptively fast. Technological advances have made railroad crossings them quiet and thus more difficult to detect. As a result, many drivers, thinking they have time, try to drive around the lowered gates or race across the tracks to try and beat the train. Nearly half of all car-train crashes occur at crossings where warning devices were active.

The Department of Transportation kicked off a new railroad crossing safety campaign on Friday with a striking new videoThe ad, a collaborative effort between the Federal Railroad Administration and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, shows a freight train traveling through the outskirts of a city before crashing into the side of an SUV. The engineer appears to apply the brakes, but it cannot slow down quickly enough. The train travels some distance as the vehicle is violently dragged along the tracks.

The ad’s title is “Stop. Trains Can’t.”

It takes a freight train traveling at 55 mph a mile to come to a complete stop even with the emergency brake applied.

“Education is key here – sometimes a driver is distracted, or in an unfamiliar area. Other times, the state highway department has not done enough to warn drivers they are approaching a crossing,” said FRA Administrator Sarah E. Feinberg. “We must do everything we can to give drivers the information they need to keep themselves and their families safe – and this ad helps us do just that.”

The Department of Transportation is spending $7 million to run the ad, which targets males between the ages of 18 and 49 in the areas where railroad crossing accidents are particularly problematic.

The ads will run in California, Illinois, Texas, Louisiana, Indiana, Ohio, Florida, Georgia, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, Alabama, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Mississippi, New Jersey, Arkansas and Arizona.

Drug-Impaired Driving, Drunk Driving, DUI/DWI/OWI/OWAI, Holiday Travel

#MemorialDay – Countdown to 100 Deadliest Days

NHTSA_QuickFacts_Fatalities_2013-2015

According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), between 2013 and 2015,  92,424 fatal crashes occurred resulting in 100,729 fatalities and 7,094,000 injuries. At certain times of the year, such as holidays and summertime, the numbers spike with a higher volume of road travelers, including a significantly higher number of alcohol-impaired drivers, causing nearly twice the number of automotive deaths during summer months than during the rest of the year combined. The summer and early fall are the most dangerous times of year on the nation’s roads, according to an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) analysis. Two important holidays fall within this timeframe for increased travel – Memorial Day and Labor Day. This period is often referred to as the 100 Deadliest Days for teens,  summer vacation for most students and the time most will drink and drive. Fatalities also are higher on weekends and in the late afternoon and evenings. The trends reflect the fact that Americans drive the most miles during the warm summer months. Weekends and certain holidays with increased alcohol consumption also see spikes in deaths.

Traveling on a major holiday is risky for many reasons. In general, there are more people on the roads, and drivers may be navigating areas beyond their regular commuting routes. There’s a high incidence of alcohol use, which sharply raises the risk of crashing.  IIHS Research and Statistical Services

Delays
With almost 40 million people sharing the roads, skies and buses, best plan for delays

According to the AAA annual forecast, 39.4 million people are expected to travel more than 50 miles from their homes  over the Memorial Day weekend, the highest in 12 years. Of these, 34.6 million Americans (88.1 percent of travelers) will drive to their destinations, an increase of 2.4 percent over last year. But Memorial Day weekend is not the most fatal for drivers. According to IIHS, on average, more people die in motor vehicle crashes on Independence Day than any other day of the year, with motorcycles and alcohol both being big contributors to the Fourth of July toll. In an analysis of the five most recent years of available fatal crash data indicates, IIHS researchers found that each year on the Independence Day holiday in the U.S., an average of 118.4 lives are lost in crashes, making it the most consistently deadly day of the year across the five-year study period. This is 28 more deaths than the overall average daily toll during 2010-14. The second worst day for crash deaths during 2010-14 was January 1, with an average toll of 118.2 deaths – almost as high as the Fourth of July.

Alcohol is a factor in a greater proportion of crash deaths on both July 4 and January 1. Forty-seven percent of the deaths on July 4 and 62 percent on January 1 involved at least one driver, pedestrian or bicyclist with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least 0.08g/dL. The average across all days in these years was 35 percent for deaths in crashes involving alcohol.