When it’s car versus train, the train usually wins

Published 11:08 pm Saturday, June 17, 2023

In 2022, there were 34 crashes at public railroad crossings in Mississippi, and three of those crashes resulted in five fatalities. Most crashes at railroad crossings are preventable.

“While highway-rail crossing collisions have dropped over the years, far too many collisions still occur,” said MDOT Executive Director Brad White.

“MDOT provides oversight in safety and traffic control on all public at-grade crossings, supporting 2,600 miles of railway. You can do your part to reduce accidents on railway crossings by putting safety first and following traffic laws.”

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With safety as the number one priority, MDOT offers these tips:

  • Never race a train to the crossing.
  • The train you see is closer and faster-moving than you think; wait for it to go by before you proceed across the tracks.
  • 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.
  • Never drive around lowered gates — it’s illegal and deadly.
  • If your vehicle ever stalls on a track with a train coming, get out immediately and move quickly away
  • Always expect a train. Freight trains do not follow set schedules.

To learn more about travel safety, visit GoMDOT.com/DriveSmartMS.