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Police officers riding the rails Tuesday for safety campaign

Citizens are reminded to never walk, cycle or drive along railway tracks
20150829 Barrie GO Transit KA 346
File photo/Village Media

York Regional Police will be working closely with Metrolinx Rail Safety Officers, along with York Region Paramedic Services and the fire services of York Region, to promote safety around our railways as part of National Rail Safety Week.

In North America every three hours, either a vehicle or pedestrian is involved in a rail incident resulting in more than 750 fatalities and 1,500 serious injuries each year.

In an effort to reduce the number of pedestrian and vehicle collisions that occur near railways, as well as addressing trespassing onto railways, York Regional Police officers will be riding the rails on Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019. Officers will be on board the Barrie line GO Train as it makes stops in East Gwillimbury, Aurora and Vaughan. They will be interacting with transit users, discussing the potential dangers that exist around our railways, as well as the laws in place to protect our community. Officers will also be handing out information pamphlets with rail safety tips.

At the conclusion of their ride at the Rutherford GO Transit station, officers will join Metrolinx representatives for a press conference at the Rutherford GO station, located at 699 Westburne Dr. in the City of Vaughan, on Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019 at 9:30 a.m.

Citizens are reminded to never walk, cycle or drive along railway tracks. It’s hard to judge how far away a train is or what speed it’s travelling at. Trains go as fast as 160 km per hour and can take up to two kilometres to come to a complete stop.

Trespassing on railway property is illegal and those found trespassing can face fines of up to $50,000. Railway yards, tunnels and bridges are all private property. Tunnels and bridges are often only slightly wider than the rails, leaving little or no room if a train does come along.

Always cross railway tracks at designated crossings. Trains can come at any time, from either direction and on any track. They don’t always run on a set schedule. Before proceeding through a crossing, look both ways and listen for approaching trains.

Together, we can work to make our roads and communities safer.