Pedestrians advised to “See Tracks, Think Train” in pilot project

City and state partners met in Post Falls last week to take part in a pilot project to improve pedestrian safety at railroad crossings.

The project installed special decals at crossings all over the state. Melted onto sidewalks, they read “See Tracks Think Train” and are targeted to alert pedestrians who are walking and looking down at their phones. Following installation, local law enforcement agencies will monitor the locations to determine how well the decals work.

This project, funded by the Rail-Highway Safety Program and the Federal Railroad Administration, is the latest example of the engineering focus held at Idaho Operation Lifesaver. ITDinstalled the decals in three locations - D1, D3 and D5.

Rail-Highway Crossing Program funds financed the purchase of the decals.

Travis Campbell, the state coordinator for the national organization, said the ten locations were chosen based on pedestrian-train collision data and insight from partner agencies. At $150 apiece, these decals could be a low-cost option to improve safety at these crossings.

The District 1 striping crew placed the last signs of the study onto the sidewalks near the Prairie Falls Golf Club.

Watch video of the installation.

“If the signs work well here, you could see them all over the state,” Campbell said.

Here's a report of activities in southwest Idaho, courtesy of KIVI Channel 6.

Besides examining the engineering at crossings, Idaho Operation Lifesaver also seeks to educate the public and work with partners to enforce safety regulations.

The organization was actually founded in 1972 in Idaho through a partnership with the Idaho State Police and the Union Pacific Railroad. Since then, the organization has coordinated many events between agencies, including Trooper on a Train and Adopt a Crossing.

“Nationwide an incident occurs every three hours between a train and a motorist or a pedestrian,” Campbell said. “Projects like this are all about raising awareness and ultimately saving lives.”

Published 08-03-18