Statement on June 28, 2017 trespass incident by Operation Lifesaver, Inc.

Wednesday’s tragic incident involving a teenaged girl killed on a train trestle in Northern Virginia is a sad reminder that being on train tracks and trestles can have deadly consequences. Our thoughts are with this young woman’s family, friends, community and the train crew involved.

Operation Lifesaver is committed to protecting families and communities from having to endure these preventable tragedies through our national awareness campaign, See Tracks? Think Train! Our goal is to raise awareness of rail safety – and empower the public to keep themselves safe near tracks and trains.

We encourage people to review and share our safety tips with their family and friends to help prevent others from risking their lives.

Operation Lifesaver’s Pedestrian Safety tips:

  • For your safety, never walk, run, cycle or operate all-terrain vehicles on railroad tracks, trestles, rights-of-way or through tunnels – they are private property and trespassers are subject to arrest and fine.
  • On railroad trestles, there is only enough clearance on the tracks for a train to pass – they are not sidewalks or pedestrian bridges.
  • The only safe and legal place to cross tracks is at a designated public crossing with either a crossbuck, flashing red lights or a gate.
  • It can take a mile or more to stop a train; a locomotive engineer who suddenly sees someone on the tracks will likely be unable to stop in time.
  • Trains overhang the tracks by at least three feet in both directions; if you are in the right-of-way next to the tracks, you can be hit by the train.

Learn more at


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 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 the public with tips and statistics to encourage safe behavior near the tracks. OLI will lead a national observance of U.S. Rail Safety Week, September 24-30, 2017. Learn more about U.S. Rail Safety Week; follow OLI on FacebookTwitterInstagram and Pinterest.

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] 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]

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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