Operation Lifesaver Films PSAs on Distracted Driving Near Railroad Tracks

THURMONT, MD,  November 12, 2009 -  Distracted driving, considered a factor in a growing number of serious vehicle crashes, is the focus of two public service announcements (PSAs) being filmed here this week by Operation Lifesaver, the nonprofit rail safety education organization. Maryland Midland Railway granted access to their tracks so that the spots could be filmed.
"While much of the media attention to this issue concerns highway incidents caused by inattentive drivers," said Operation Lifesaver President Helen Sramek, "vehicle-train incidents are also caused by drivers unaware of their surroundings due to cell phone conversations, texting or any other activity that draws the driver's eyes away from the road." 

The PSAs will show two scenarios where distracted driving leads to danger as drivers fail to notice that they are approaching highway-rail grade crossings. Federal statistics show that inattentive drivers contribute to approximately three percent of all vehicle-train crashes at highway-rail grade crossings, and that 20 percent of grade crossing collisions involve motor vehicles striking trains at a crossing.
Funding for the spots comes through a grant from the Federal Railroad Administration and the Department of Transportation, which has declared distracted driving to be a top safety concern. 

About Operation Lifesaver

Operation Lifesaver, Inc. is a national, non-profit safety education group whose goal is to eliminate deaths and injuries at railroad crossings and along railroad rights of way. Operation Lifesaver has programs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, with trained and certified presenters who give free safety talks to community groups, schools, school bus drivers, truck drivers and community organizations to raise awareness of the need for caution around railroad tracks and trains. For more information, including driving safety tips and to request a free safety presentation in your community, visit www.oli.org.

Media Contact

Operation Lifesaver, Inc. understands the importance of the news media’s role in helping the public make safe decisions around tracks and trains.

To request further information about Operation Lifesaver’s activities, or for additional safety information, email general[at]oli.org or contact our national headquarters office at 703-739-0308.

If you are a reporter seeking information for a local news story, view our list of state Operation Lifesaver program contacts.

If you are on deadline for a story and would like Operation Lifesaver, Inc.'s perspective on a highway-rail safety or trespass prevention topic, email news[at]oli.org

About Operation Lifesaver

Operation Lifesaver 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. Our team consists of nationwide network of volunteers who work to educate people about rail safety, state coordinators who lead the efforts in states across the U.S. and a national office in Washington, D.C., that supports state programs, develops education materials, and creates public awareness campaigns for audiences of all ages. 


National Office

Operation Lifesaver, Inc.
425 Third Street SW, Suite 915
Washington, D.C. 20024

Fax: 703-519-8267
Email : [email protected]

Media Inquiries: [email protected]

Transit Inquiries: [email protected]

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