Missouri Operation Lifesaver
About MO OL
Operation Lifesaver 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. Missouri adopted the program in October 1977. 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.
What is Missouri Operation Lifesaver?
Missouri Operation Lifesaver (MO OL) is a nonprofit public safety education and awareness organization dedicated to reducing collisions, fatalities and injuries at highway-rail crossings and trespassing on or near railroad tracks. OL promotes rail safety through public awareness campaigns and education initiatives, including free safety presentations by authorized volunteers. We speak to school groups, driver education classes, community audiences, professional drivers, law enforcement officers, emergency responders, and others. Our program is co-sponsored by state and local government agencies, highway safety organizations, America's railroads, and other entities. Together we promote the three E's - education, enforcement and engineering - to keep people safe around the tracks and railway crossings within our communities. MO OL is part of a national nonprofit program known as Operation Lifesaver, Inc. (OLI).
Why is Operation Lifesaver Needed?
Sadly, every year people in Missouri are killed or injured at highway-rail crossings and at other locations along railroad tracks.
Many people are unaware that trains cannot stop quickly to avoid collisions; or, they take chances by ignoring warning signs and signals, going around lowered gates, stopping on tracks, or simply not paying attention when approaching highway-rail crossings. People also make the potentially fatal mistake of choosing railroad tracks as shortcuts or as places to walk or run for recreation. They may not realize that walking on train tracks is illegal, or understand how quickly and quietly a train can approach. Our safety tips can save your life – or the life of someone you love.
Become an Operation Lifesaver Authorized Volunteer
We are always looking for high-energy volunteers to help us spread our important message. Our volunteers are everywhere—schools, training programs, law enforcement events and safety fairs—with the common purpose of keeping our citizens safe. You can begin the process today by clicking on this link oli.org/training/volunteer-for-oli.
MO OL Events
95% OF ALL RAIL-RELATED DEATHS INVOLVE DRIVERS GOING THROUGH
A CROSSING OR A PERSON ON THE TRACKS
STAY OFF! STAY AWAY! STAY ALIVE!
2020 RAIL SAFETY WEEK
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Tim Hull Missouri Operation Lifesaver, 573-694-6412, thull.MOOL21@gmail.com
Jennifer DeAngelis, Operation Lifesaver, Inc., email@example.com
Rail Safety Week Observance Going Virtual in 2020
Public urged to help #STOPTrackTragedies
Jefferson City, Missouri, September 21, 2020 – Every year, 2,100 North Americans are killed or seriously injured when they engage in unsafe behavior around tracks and trains. Missouri Operation Lifesaver is joining Operation Lifesaver Inc. (OLI), Operation Lifesaver Canada and the Mexican Association of Railroads (AMF) from September 21-27 to observe Rail Safety Week in North America.
“Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year Rail Safety Week will emphasize virtual activities and social media to share our lifesaving messages,” said Missouri Operation Lifesaver State Coordinator Tim Hull. We are kicking off the week today with a Missouri Rail Safety Week proclamation signed by Governor Parson on August 28, 2020 proclaiming September 21 – 27, 2020 to be Rail Safety Week in Missouri.
In Missouri each year, 36 people are killed or injured in grade crossing and trespassing incidents. Operation Lifesaver works to prevent these needless incidents from happening.
As part of Rail Safety week, the organization is releasing new video and audio public service announcements (PSAs) in their ongoing public awareness campaign aimed at saving lives near railroad tracks. The campaign, called #STOPTrackTragedies, features videos with personal stories of people directly affected by rail crossing or trespassing incidents — including victims, friends and family members, locomotive engineers, and first responders. The full campaign can be viewed at oli.org/stop-track-tragedies.
In Missouri and across the U.S., along with the PSAs and a social media campaign, the following themes will be emphasized:
• Monday, September 21 kicks off the week with a focus on Media Outreach and Rail Safety Week Proclamations in states and localities. In Missouri a focus on virtual training for the new Railroad Investigation Safety Course, RISC, Instructor Training Day 1 of 2.
• Tuesday, September 22 focuses on Law Enforcement and First Responder Partnerships through virtual and social media messaging as part of the fourth annual observance of Operation Clear Track, emphasizing the importance of obeying crossing safety and anti-trespass laws. It will also be day 2 of 2 of the virtual training for RISC Instructors.
• Wednesday, September 23 highlights Crossing Safety, with outreach to professional drivers on safe crossing techniques and highlighting blue and white emergency notification system (ENS) signs at crossings.
• Thursday, September 24, Transit Safety Thursday, showcases how to stay safe as a rail commuter or transit rider.
• Friday, September 25 focuses on Wearing Red or “Red Out” for Rail Safety to show support for safety near tracks and trains.
• Saturday, September 26 highlights Trespass Prevention, educating pedestrians about the dangers posed by being on or near the tracks.
• Sunday, September 27 promotes No Photos on Tracks messaging underscoring the risks of illegally taking photos, videos, or filming on train tracks for professional and amateur photographers alike.
Visitors to oli.org will be asked to join the virtual Rail Safety Week effort by sharing the Stop Track Tragedies videos and social media messaging using the hashtags #STOPTrackTragedies and #railsafetyweek.
About Operation Lifesaver, Inc.
Operation Lifesaver is a nonprofit public safety education and awareness organization dedicated to reducing collisions, fatalities and injuries at highway-rail crossings and preventing trespassing on or near railroad tracks. A national network of trained volunteers gives free presentations on rail safety and a public awareness campaign, “See Tracks? Think Train!” provides tips and statistics to encourage safe behavior near the tracks. Learn more about Rail Safety Week; follow OLI on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube.
About Operation Lifesaver Canada
Operation Lifesaver Canada is a national public rail-safety program sponsored by Transport Canada, the Railway Association of Canada and its members, including CN, CP, VIA Rail, Metrolinx, exo, West Coast Express and Genesee & Wyoming, among others. Through its national network of Rail Safety Ambassadors, partnerships with safety councils, police, the trucking industry and community groups, and innovative tools such as its virtual-reality Look. Listen. Live. campaign, Operation Lifesaver Canada works to save lives by educating Canadians about the hazards of rail crossings and trespassing on railway property. Canadians can follow OL Canada on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and keep up-to-date on the latest rail safety news by visiting operationlifesaver.ca.
About the Mexican Association of Railroads (AMF)
The Asociación Mexicana de Ferrocarriles, AC (AMF) was established in 2004 to represent the country’s private railway companies and promote their activity. In 2008 passenger rail companies joined the AMF. Learn more at https://amf.org.mx/ and follow AMF on Twitter.
MO OL Safety Partners
Missouri Operation Lifesaver is sponsored by and in safety partnerhip with:
- Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway (BNSF)
- Kansas City Southern Railroad (KCS)
- Norfolk Southern Railway (NS)
- Union Pacific Railroad (UP)
- Arkansas & Missouri Railroad (AMR)
- MetroLink/Bi-State Development Agency (BSDA)
- Central Midland Railway (CMR)
- Canadian Pacific Railroad (CP)
- Kaw River Railroad (KAW)
- Kansas City Terminal Railway (KCT)
- Missouri & Northern Arkansas Railroad (MNA)
- Pemiscot County Port Authority Railroad
- SEMO Port Railroad
- Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT)
- Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP)
- Missouri Coalition For Roadway Safety (MCRS)
- Missouri School Bus Task Force
- Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)
MO OL Statistics
Preliminary Missouri Rail Crossing and Trespass Statistics, 2017 vs. 2016
Source: FRA Office of Safety Analysis
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Tim Hull, Executive Director Missouri Operation Lifesaver
Phone - 573-694-6412
Email - thull.MOOL21@gmail.com
Missouri Operation Lifesaver notes decrease in 2019 crossing collisions; pedestrian-train casualties fell from 2018 levels
Preliminary Rail Crossing and Trespass Statistics, 2018 vs. 2019
Source: FRA Office of Safety Analysis
Jefferson City, MO April 27, 2020 – Collisions at highway-rail grade crossings collisions in Missouri dropped by almost 18 percent in 2019 and rail trespass casualties held steady at 16 according to the nonprofit rail safety education organization Missouri Operation Lifesaver, https://community.oli.org/state/mo. The group cited preliminary 2019 Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) statistics.
“We are pleased with this decrease in highway-rail grade crossing collisions, but we can do better,” said Missouri Operation Lifesaver Executive Director Tim Hull, “We will continue our work educating people across Missouri about how to keep themselves, their friends and their families safe near tracks and trains to avoid these preventable tragedies,” said Hull.
Overall, Missouri crossing collisions were down 18 percent in 2019 from 2018, to 32; crossing fatalities fell 62 percent to 3; and crossing injuries fell 7 percent to 13, FRA statistics reveal. Trespass fatalities increased 25 percent in 2019 to 12, and trespass injuries fell 42 percent in 2019 to 4.
“This year, Missouri will participate in Rail Safety Week, September 21-27,” Hull continued. “We look forward to working with our safety partners to raise awareness among Missouri residents of the need to always use caution near crossings and refrain from trespassing on the tracks.” he concluded.
About Operation Lifesaver
Operation Lifesaver (www.oli.org) is a nonprofit public safety education and awareness organization dedicated to reducing collisions, fatalities and injuries at highway-rail crossings and preventing trespassing on or near railroad tracks. A national network of trained volunteers gives free presentations on rail safety and a public awareness campaign, See Tracks? Think Train!” provides tips and statistics to encourage safe behavior near the tracks. OLI leads an international observance of Rail Safety Week each September. Learn more about Rail Safety Week; follow OLI on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest.
Target Counties for 2020
These counties were selected based on rail crossing incidents, from FRA data, MoDOT Multimodal Operations Division-Railroad Section and Railroad Unsafe Motorists Reports.