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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Operation Lifesaver: stay off the train tracks

  • What it is: Law enforcement joined forces with not-for-profit organization Operation Lifesaver to educate area residents about the importance of railway safety.


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  • What it is: Law enforcement joined forces with not-for-profit organization Operation Lifesaver to educate area residents about the importance of railway safety.
    "To be honest, this was all organized by operation lifesaver," Missouri State Highway Patrol Troop I Public Information Officer Sgt. Dan Crain said. "We in law enforcement are assisting them because it's important."
    MSHP troopers, Rolla Police officers, employees of Burlington Northern Railroad and volunteers with the Operation Lifesaver organization lined three intersections in Rolla Wednesday morning.
    Each motorist who came through was approached by someone working the event and given a brochure highlighting railroad safety.
    Drivers who remembered to buckle-up that morning were also rewarded with a keychain.
    Crain said it is what the patrol refers to as a "positive enforcement program," meaning the officers are not looking to write citations, but rather to have a conversation with motorists.
    The brochure they handed out reminds motorists to look both ways, wait for trains that are in their line of sight, and get away from the tracks if their car stalls while crossing.
    According to Crain, it can take one full mile for a train to stop, and that is in good conditions.
    He also said that a train hits a car with the same force that a car would hit a 12 ounce soda can.
    "That is why the crashes are so dramatic and traumatic," he said.
    Crain also reminds citizens that train safety isn't important only to motorists.
    "Its not just crossings that are an issue," he said. "It's people trespassing on the tracks. When you look at all of our serious injuries and fatalities, a substantial number occur because people are walking on the tracks, and in Rolla, that is a problem we have."
    For more information about Operation Lifesaver, visit oil.org.

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