Remember when you tie you lose
Operation Lifesaver (Great Lakes Live Steamers)
Ever stopped to consider the dangers involved with crossing highway-rail grade intersections or trespassing on railroad property? At Operation Lifesaver, we have.
We know that injuries and fatalities that occur at highway-rail crossings or on railroad property are a real, but often preventable, problem. Few people realize that in America, a person or vehicle is hit by
a train roughly every three hours, and that's a reality we're determined to change. Welcome to Operation Lifesaver, a
non-profit organization providing public education programs to prevent collisions, injuries and fatalities on and around railroad tracks and highway-rail grade crossings.
Mission and History
We started in 1972 when the average number of collisions at U.S. highway-rail grade crossings had risen above 12,000 incidents annually. To address this, the Idaho governor's office, along with the Idaho Peace Officers and Union Pacific Railroad launched a six-week public awareness educational campaign called Operation Lifesaver to promote highway-rail grade crossing safety. After Idaho's crossing-related fatalities fell that year by 43%, the successful program was adopted by Nebraska (1973) and Kansas and Georgia the following year. Within a decade it had spread around the country; in 1986 a non-profit national Operation Lifesaver office was created to help support the efforts of state OL programs and raise national awareness on highway-rail grade crossing issues.

Today Operation Lifesaver's network of certified volunteer speakers and trained instructors offer free rail safety education programs in fifty states. We speak to school groups, driver education classes, community audiences, professional drivers, law enforcement officers, and emergency responders. Our programs are co-sponsored by federal, state and local government agencies, highway safety organizations and America's railroads. Together we promote the three E's - education, enforcement and engineering - to keep people safe around the tracks and railway crossings within our communities.
Trains - passenger, light-rail, and freight - offer among the most efficient transportation available to move us into the 21st century. U.S. Department of Transportation projections calling for substantial increases in rail transport over the next three decades mean that we, along with rail safety partners in the rail industry and at the federal, state and local levels, must work together to meet the safety challenges that accompany a rail renaissance. As advanced technology helps build quieter, faster trains, our responsibility to teach people how to be safe around them increases, too. At Operation Lifesaver, we're committed to raising awareness and improving public safety on and around highway-rail grade crossings and tracks through public awareness and education; we're committed to saving lives.
Trespass Fatalities by State - Top 15 States
(Based on Preliminary 2012 Federal Railroad Administration Statistics)

UPDATED 9/26/13

According to FRA statistics, 434 pedestrian rail trespass fatalities occurred in 2012. Approximately 70% of all Year 2012 trespass fatalities occurred in the 15 states listed below.

1. California            71
2. Texas                  31
3. Pennsylvania     30
4. Florida                27
5. New York            23
6. Ohio                    17
7. North Carolina   16
8. Illinois                 15
9. Georgia               14
10. Massachusetts 13
11. Indiana              12
12. Kentucky          12
13. Michigan           11
14. Oklahoma         11
15. Washington      11

Remember - rails and recreation do NOT mix!
                              Michigan Crash Statistics thru October 8, 2013

                                                                               2010    2011    2012    2013
​Train/vehicle crashes                                            51         54        34        32
Train/vehicle crash fatalities                                 5           8          1          2
Train/vehicle crash injuries                                   26         17        34        13
Train/trespasser incidents                                    16          8         18         8
Train/trespasser incident fatalities                       8            5         14        7   
Train/trespasser incident injuries                         7           3          4         1
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