people on train tracks

U.S. Gov't Urges Public: Don't Walk Or Sit On Railroad Tracks

May 21, 2019 - 2:23 pm

(WWJ) The U.S. government wants to remind everyone: Stay off the railroad tracks. 

Although this may seem like a no brainer to some, it's not uncommon for people to walk on train tracks; and with the popularity of social media, it's practically commonplace to see digital photos of people posing, sitting or even lying down on the rails. 

In a tweet Tuesday, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), an agency within the United States Department of Transportation, informs the public that even if railroad tracks look abandoned or unused, they may not be. 

Officials add that railroad tracks are private property, and that trespassing on them is not just illegal, but dangerous, too. "If you see tracks, you should ALWAYS expect a train--at any time, and in any direction," the FRA wrote in the tweet. 

According to the FRA, railroad crossing incidents are the second leading cause of rail-related deaths in America.

The FRA says 94% of all rail-related fatalities and injuries occur at railroad crossings or due to trespassing, and that of the more than 400 trespass fatalities that occur across the U.S. each year, the vast majority are preventable.