Diboll PD raises awareness of train safety following triple fata - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Diboll PD raises awareness of train safety following triple fatality in March


When you see those flashing red lights and the guard rails come down at a railroad crossing, the law requires you to stop. Train authorities and local police are finding many motorists do not take heed, which can be deadly.

"One of the more common violations we see is vehicles stopping on the tracks, vehicles driving around the lowered gate arms, as a train approaches, school buses failing to stop at crossings, and also vehicles that are packed with flammable or explosive liquids not stopping prior to going across the tracks," said Senior Special Agent Cliff Mayton of the Union Pacific Railroad Police Department.

12 Diboll police officers and DPS troopers were out looking for violators Thursday morning in a special crackdown operation. Those caught breaking the law were issued a ticket.

"It's not a scare tactic. It's just really to make the public aware of what's going on in their surroundings. We give them a little reminder that those crossing arms are there, and they do have to stop," said Diboll Police Chief, Ricky Conner.

Conner says it's especially important to raise train safety awareness, following an accident last March that claimed the lives of three East Texans. The vehicle reportedly stopped or got stuck on the tracks when a train collided into the jeep, killing all three occupants in the vehicle.

"It's unfortunate that something like that happened, but it also makes you think a lot when something like that happens. It makes you be a little bit more proactive towards situations," said Conner.

Mayton says it's easy to practice proper safety measures, just look, listen, and live.

"Look both ways before you cross the tracks. Listen for the approach of the train. And, if you do that, then you'll live," said Mayton.

Authorities tell us the March triple fatality is still under investigation. They also urge all motorists to follow the law by stopping safely and allowing trains to pass.

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