Railroad safety facts FOR KIDS!

March 1, 2018

Here at EnterTRAINment Junction we want you to be safe AND smart around trains! We have a section in our museum dedicated to rail safety and now we’re writing an article about it as well!

1. It’s NEVER okay to walk on railroad tracks- even if there isn’t a train around. Trains can come at anytime and from any direction. You won’t always hear a train approaching and trains approach a lot faster than you think! Fact: Railroad tracks often form an illusion that the train is farther away than it really is. The size of the train along with the angle you’re looking at the train forms an illusion as well. It makes it seem like the train is traveling slower than it is… Put these illusions together and it’s not a good combination! Your best and safest bet is to stay away from the tracks!

If you don’t heed this advice and you happen to find yourself on the tracks, even if the train spots you, it won’t have enough time to stop.  It can take a train a mile or even longer to come to a full stop which makes sense considering the average train has 100 cars and can weigh up to 20 million pounds!! Unlike cars, trains can’t swerve out of the way to hit you. The train simply follows the track it’s on.

2. You shouldn’t get close to trains that are stopped because you never know when they will start up again.  Trains can start moving without warning and you could get seriously hurt.

3. You should only cross railroad tracks at designated crossings such as sidewalks or pedestrian overpasses. Just like on a roadway, you always want to check both directions before crossing train tracks- even if one train just passed, there might be another one coming on a different track.

4. It is NEVER safe to be on a train trestle, bridge, or in a train tunnel. Trains are wider than their tracks which means there is no room for you or anything else.

For more information on railroad safety please visit Operation Lifesaver.