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Rail News: Safety

UP, Operation Lifesaver issue public safety messages


Union Pacific Railroad this week launched a public safety campaign on social media and Internet radio to remind drivers and pedestrians to use caution near railroad tracks.

The "Your Life is Worth the Wait" campaign asks drivers to use caution when approach rail crossings, and urges people not to take "selfies" on or around railroad tracks, according to a UP press release.

The promotions are running on YouTube, Facebook and Pandora.

The campaign includes a Chicago-focused Pandora commercial encouraging passenger train commuters to turn down the volume on their earbuds when near tracks.

Meanwhile, Operation Lifesaver Inc. (OLI) President and Chief Executive Officer Bonnie Murphy has asked Subaru of America to reconsider a television commercial that shows potentially dangerous activity on railroad property.

Subaru's "Land of Dreams" advertisement for the 2017 Outback shows a woman and her significant other illegally riding in a railroad box car, according to the letter Murphy wrote to Alan Bethke, vice president of marketing at Subaru of America.

OLI released the letter on its Twitter account.

Murphy's letter notes that the ad "perpetuates the myth that hopping freight trains is some sort of romantic adventure."

"In real life, trespassing on train tracks and property is the No. 1 cause of rail-related casualties every year in the U.S. — nearly 900 Americans were killed or injured trespassing last year alone," said Murphy's letter.

Murphy also notes that Subaru promotes health and safety protection as part of its corporate responsibility policy.

Murphy invited Subaru to learn more about how OLI works with communities to raise awareness of the need for caution around railroad property.

"Won't you help us to save lives?" she asks.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 8/17/2016