Monday, May 7, 2012
Motorists in the greater Wichita area have another reason to take care at railroad crossings on Tuesday.
The Sedgwick County Sheriff's Office is putting deputies on trains to watch for drivers who fail to stop for approaching trains. The sheriff's office is working with Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad in the operation dubbed "Cops on Rails/Officer on the Train."
Tuesday's operation will be in effect from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Deputies will ride BNSF trains to spot and report drivers failing to stop for trains. Violators could be fined $195, plus a $100 court cost.
"Cops on Rails" is an ongoing campaign by the sheriff's office and the freight carrier.
The Sedgwick County Sheriff's Office offers these tips for train safety:
· Never drive around lowered gates.
· If your vehicle stalls on a crossing, immediately get everyone out and far away from the tracks. Move away from the tracks in the direction from which the train is approaching. Call your local law enforcement agency for assistance.
· Be aware that trains cannot stop quickly. Even if the locomotive engineer sees you, a freight train moving at 55 miles per hour can take a mile or more to stop once the emergency brakes are applied.
· Always expect a train! Freight trains do not follow set schedules.
· Never race a train to the crossing - even if you tie, you lose.
· Always look and listen in both directions before trying to cross any railroad track.