WEYBURN - Every year, dozens of Canadians are killed or seriously injured in collisions at railway crossings. In fact, there were 159 such incidents in Canada in 2022, which killed 14 people and seriously injured another 27. Sadly, virtually all these tragedies were preventable.
Operation Lifesaver (OL) Canada, in partnership with HUB Surface Systems and the City of Weyburn, unveiled new rail safety decals at three major rail crossings within city limits as part of OL’s “Look. Listen. Live.” Community Safety Partnership Program.
Through the program, OL works with municipalities to identify locations where rail-safety decals can be installed to remind people to be situationally aware around crossings. Each bright yellow decal features a black silhouette of a train, as well as the words: “Look. Listen. Live.” OL’s important rail-safety message. The goal of the decals is simple: to prevent tragic crossing incidents by making pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers more aware of the need to be vigilant around railway crossings.
“Safety is a collective responsibility and today we join Operation Livesaver to take a step towards making our city a safer community for all,” said Marcel Roy, Weyburn Mayor. “These decals are commitment by the City of Weyburn to rail safety and serve as a visual reminder to pedestrians, cyclists and drivers to remain vigilant around railways crossings.”
“Rail safety became part of my life in August 2018. It took the death of my daughter, Kailynn, to bring the importance of traffic and rail safety to lift,” said Sandra LaRose. “Loud music, distraction and inexperience all played a part in Kailynn’s accident. I proudly work alongside Operation Lifesaver Canada to share the importance of rail safety awareness, and educate everyone about the dangers surrounding railway crossings.”
“Incidents at railways crossings are tragically common across this country, and each one affects the victim’s family and friends, as well as railway employees, first responders and broader communities,” said Sarah Mayes, National Director of Operation Lifesaver Canada. "OL’s decal program aims to make the public more aware of the hazards around rail crossings, which will hopefully save lives. We want people to slow down, look in both directions, listen for approaching trains, and obey all railway warning signs and signals.”
Vancouver, B.C., and London, Ont., became the first Canadian cities to sign onto the Community Safety Partnership Program in 2018, and as of 2023, there are 100 municipalities participating in the program.
Municipalities can obtain more information about the Community Safety Partnership Program by visiting OL’s website. OL also recently unveiled a free toolkit for communities to use in promoting rail safety to their residents, which is available at www.operationlifesaver.ca.