USA: Commitment to ILCAD affirmed

5 Jun

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) marked the 7th Annual International Level Crossing Awareness Day (ILCAD)on June 3rd, 2015. Major freight railroads hosted ILCAD events across the U.S. with an additional 43 countries and numerous international railroad organizations and companies hosting events worldwide with a focus on the common message: “Take your time, don’t risk your life!”

“Safety is the freight railroad industry’s highest priority and that includes ensuring the public knows about the dangers associated with grade crossings,” said AAR President and CEO Edward R. Hamberger. “Although the grade crossing collision rate has fallen 35% since 2000, that is not low enough and much more public awareness and education needs to be done. Programs like International Level Crossing Awareness Day bring the industry closer to the goal of zero grade crossing fatalities.”

US freight railroads joined with public safety organizations in more than 20 states to bring attention to grade crossing safety and awareness through events and promotions that included: “Officer on a Train,” where law enforcement officers ride trains and observe risky driver behavior at crossings; participation in community education programs; and distribution of literature about railroad crossing safety targeting truck drivers. America’s railroads have led the international community in promoting grade crossing safety, and spend millions of dollars annually to maintain grade crossings and educate the public on the risky behaviors to avoid at grade crossings.

Turkish Railways hosted an international delegation of rail and road stakeholders and behavioral experts at a conference in Istanbul. An exhibition of posters produced from a worldwide contest for children and the “ILCAD 2015” video will be used to remind pedestrians, cyclists and other road users of the importance of grade crossing safety.

The ILCAD Campaign was established in 2009 by the international railroad community in conjunction with various highway organizations, the European Commission and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), to raise awareness among road users and pedestrians of the risks at grade crossings. To date, more than 40 countries around the world have participated in ILCAD.

For more information on International Level Crossing Awareness Day, please go to www.ilcad.org. To learn more about what railroads are doing to enhance safety, please visit www.freightrailworks.org. For information on what role Operation Lifesaver plays in rail safety education, please visit http://oli.org/.

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