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2020 Rail Safety Week goes virtual to save lives

2020 Rail Safety Week goes virtual to save lives

Lacey, Wash.,– Washington Operation Lifesaver is teaming up with U.S. and international rail safety partners to promote Rail Safety Week, Sept. 21-27, dedicated to preventing rail related fatalities and injury through education.

A partnership among Washington Operation Lifesaver, the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC), Operation Lifesaver Inc. (OLI), Operation Lifesaver Canada, and the Mexican Association of Railroads (AMF) Rail Safety Week features social media campaigns and community education to help keep people safe around trains and tracks.

Gov. Jay Inslee signed a proclamation declaring Washington state’s commitment to Rail Safety Week to reduce crossing collisions and pedestrian-trespass incidents by raising awareness of railroad safety.

In 2019, 37 people were killed or injured in grade crossing and trespassing incidents in Washington state.

As part of Rail Safety week, Operation Lifesaver is releasing new public service announcements aimed at saving lives near railroad tracks. The #STOPTrackTragedies campaign features videos with personal stories of people directly affected by rail crossing or trespassing incidents including victims, friends, and family members, locomotive engineers, and first responders. The full campaign is available at

Join the virtual Rail Safety Week effort by sharing the Stop Track Tragedies videos and social media messaging using the hashtags #STOPTrackTragedies and #railsafetyweek.

Operation Lifesaver is a non-profit public safety education and awareness organization dedicated to reducing collisions, fatalities and injuries at highway-rail crossings and preventing trespassing on or near railroad tracks.

The UTC regulates railroad safety, including approving new rail crossings and closing or altering existing crossings, investigating train accidents, inspecting railroad crossings, approving safety projects, and promoting rail safety education through Operation Lifesaver. In addition, the commission partners with the Federal Railroad Administration to perform inspections of track, hazardous materials, signal and train control, operating practices, and locomotive power and equipment.