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Idaho Operation Life Saver focuses on safety at railroad crossings

Idaho Operation Life Saver focuses on safety at railroad crossings

Idaho Operation Life Saver Has promoted safety at railway crossings through education and awareness for over 50 years.

We have worked with this nonprofit on two separate occasions where they have partnered with the Idaho State Police on compliance checks to remind drivers that they should be aware of trains at crossings.

“Engineers and conductors are also influenced by the examples they see,” said Tim Johnson of Idaho’s Operation Life Saver. “They are driving the train, they don’t want to see the accident, they don’t want to be involved in the accident because it hurts them too much.”

Tim Johnson is in charge of the Idaho chapter of this national organization and we spoke by phone in northern Idaho about the tragic accident where 67 year old Gary Baker of Meridian lost his life after being on the tracks after an oncoming train Gave. ,

“Looking at photos of the area, it’s a pretty wide open, rural crossing,” Johnson said. “There is no restriction on watching either way, so it is the error of the driver which, unfortunately, has taken his life, why he didn’t stop or see the train, we don’t know.”

We scouted the area as far as rural crossings at East Kuna Mora Road and South Eagle Road. There is a stop sign warning at the crossing, a railway crossing marking on the footpath, and then a stop sign before the crossing.

We went to the next railroad crossing in Cloverdale, which is a very busy road near a new subdivision and it was an active crossing, meaning it had lights and a gate.

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Johnson told us that it is possible to upgrade the crossing, but before anything happens they will have to do a traffic study to determine what is needed at the crossing.

“Just because there’s an incident at a crossing doesn’t mean they’re automatically going to put up lights and gates,” Johnson said. “It’s a fairly extensive process to set up an active crossing, but if the traffic calls for a study the railroad and highway departments will get together and find the funding to do so.”

Idaho Operation Life Savers more than anything tells people to be vigilant near crossings, as there were more than last year 2,000 accidents Across the country, 234 people lost their lives after trains collided with vehicles or pedestrians.

Johnson said, “It’s the same message. The bad thing is, until something like this happens, everyone is complacent.” “Always expecting a train, they usually don’t run on schedule, they go when they have a load ready to go.”

One in Idaho Operation Life Saver contact On their website where the public can report unsafe level crossings.

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