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Rail News: Communication and Signal

CSXT, NS add advertising campaign, cameras to crossing safety strategies, UTU says


Although some U.S. Class Is were criticized for how they handle grade crossing incidents in a recent New York Times feature series, CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern Railway are trying harder — and taking different approaches — to prevent crossing accidents, injuries and fatalities, according to a news item on the United Transportation Union's Web site.

CSXT recently launched an advertising campaign targeting its most heavily traveled and accident-prone corridors between Nashville and Chattanooga, Tenn.; Toledo and Cincinnati, Ohio; and Gulfport and Pascagoula, Miss.
Co-sponsored by UTU, the campaign includes radio public service announcements and billboards with such blunt messages as: "Two words: Closed casket," and "If you're thinking about beating a train, don't. Tie goes to the train."

Meanwhile, NS has developed a digital camera system to record activities leading up to accidents along its rights of way. The cameras record train speed, date and time, and sounds that can be used to investigate crossing and trespasser incidents.

The camera is mounted on the upper left corner of the engineer's window; an external microphone is installed underneath the locomotive cab.

The Federal Highway Administration plans to analyze the camera system — which also is being tested by Burlington Northern Santa Fe — to help improve crossing designs.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 8/19/2004