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The Association of American Railroads (AAR) joined the global rail industry today to mark the 13th Annual International Level Crossing Awareness Day (ILCAD), which aims to increase international awareness about the dangers surrounding grade crossings.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 95% of all rail-related deaths — such as those caused by a driver going around warning devices or a person walking on the tracks — are preventable.
This year’s ILCAD focuses on the role distraction — particularly from mobile devices — can play in crossing and pedestrian incidents. Recognizing that persistent challenge, Operation Lifesaver Inc. has launched “Near Miss” and new driver distraction campaigns aimed at increasing awareness among young people about the importance of avoiding distractions near tracks.
The ILCAD Campaign was established in 2009 by the international railroad community in conjunction with various highway organizations, the European Commission and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe to raise awareness among road users and pedestrians of the risks at crossings.
“As railroads continue to improve the safety of grade crossings, initiatives like International Level Crossings Day are vital to ensuring the public knows how to stay safe near the tracks. Every time you see railroad tracks, stop, look and listen,” said AAR President and Chief Executive Officer Ian Jefferies in a press release.