Rail transport is the one of the overland transport in the world that uses rail track built on ground for its operations. Since, it’s one of the land based transportation, hence, it becomes paramount importance for all road users to be conscious and cautious when approaching any rail track.
In view of this, here are the simple safety tips you need to know on rail transportation:
- Train has no specific time:
Many road users such as motorists, cyclists etc. aren’t always conscious of the fact that freight trains don’t have schedule time and that it can be on operation anytime, anyplace and anywhere. Therefore, it’s high risk for any road user to approach highway-rail crossing anyhow without being safety conscious and cautious.
- Train cannot stopped immediately:
Although, a train has an emergency brake system, yet it can’t bring the train to an instant halt. In other words, the train has no kind of brake we have in motor vehicles that can bring a motor vehicle into an instant stoppage. So, don’t cross the rail track at will when the rail is fast approaching; it may be closer to you than how it really appears and more importantly, it does not have the capacity to stop for you like a car.
- Train cannot diverge:
It’s very difficult, if not impossible, for train operators to avoid or diverge for any object, vehicle or person on its track. Trains are designed to follow their track to a desired location or destination. It operates like one way traffic, so to say. No flexibility, therefore, like I noted earlier, it will be very difficult, if not impossible, for train operators to avoid an unwanted collision on its tracks. Hence, be careful when approaching a highway-rail crossing.
- Don’t misjudge the train by ignoring the warnings at the level crossing:
Some level crossings are designed with safety warnings for all road users who intend to make use of the level crossing, but it’s worthy to note that some motorists and cyclists take such safety warnings for granted by misjudging the speed of a train. This may explain why some collision between a vehicle and a train occur occasionally, at the level crossing.
- Don’t misjudging the speed of a train:
Often times, most road users erroneously assume that a locomotive train travels at a slow speed; hence, you see many of them daring the speed of a train approaching level crossing even though they hear the sound of the train from afar. This poor safety attitude may also lead to a collision at the level crossing.
Don’t use the rail tracks as your pedestrian facility:
It baffles me whenever I see pedestrians who deliberately decide to use the rail track as their foot path to their desired destinations. In fact, you see some of them trekking a reasonable distance on a rail track, and funny enough, they mistakenly believe that they could use the rail track as their footpath with impunity. This is a dangerous behavior, because the train can come in any direction and the pedestrians may be caught in an area that may be too difficult for them to avoid or escape the oncoming train.
Be watchful at a level crossing:
Finally, always be watchful for other trains when you are at a level crossing with more than one rail track. In addition, don’t cross the track immediately after a train; please wait to see if other train is not moving on the other rail tracks.
It pays to be safety conscious whenever you are at the level crossing.