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Railroad Crossing Safety
In Charlotte, trains operate daily crossing City streets. It is important for motorists and pedestrians to be cautious while approaching a railroad crossing or track.

The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) recommends the following tips for motorists at railroad crossings:

  • Always expect a train at every highway-rail intersection.
  • Freight trains do not travel on a predictable schedule and passenger train schedules frequently change.
Train at railroad crossing.
  • Trains ALWAYS have the right-of-way over ambulances, fire engines, cars and law enforcement.
  • Always stop your vehicle when crossing gates are down or lights are flashing. Never try to drive around the gate. Look both ways, listen and proceed with caution.
  • Never stop your car on railroad tracks. When approaching an intersection at railroad tracks, keep your car safely behind the white lines.
  • Never race a train to a crossing.
For pedestrians, NCDOT recommends the following:
  • Never walk or ride a bike on or near the railroad tracks - it's against the law.
  • The tracks are not a trail, a shortcut or a place to rest.
  • Trains cannot stop quickly. It is a simple law of physics: the huge weight, size and speed of the train dictate how quickly it can stop. Once the train is set into emergency braking, a 100-car freight train traveling at 55 mph will need more than a mile to stop — that's approximately 18 football fields.
  • Never race a train to a crossing on your bike, skateboard or recreational vehicle. You will lose.

This information is provided by NCDOT's BeRailSafe campaign. For more information about railroad safety visit BeRailSafe.orgleaving site.