Avoid the impact: Rail Safety Week kicks off in Central Florida

FDOT sharing safety tips

SunRail travels 49 miles on a north-south route through Central Florida with 16 stations along the way. (WKMG)

WINTER PARK, Fla. – Sunrail on Monday kicked off its annual Rail Safety Week.

That means for the next several days, officials with the Florida Department of Transportation will be going to different crossing locations across Central Florida to show drivers and pedestrians ways to avoid getting hit by a train.

“Never stopping on the track, even if you don’t see a train in sight there could be one coming very soon,” Loreen Bobo with FDOT said.

Bobo explained there’s already been several crashes. Some had fatalities.

“In 2023, this year, we already had five incidents along where Sunrail rides so those were people that were walking on the track or they stopped their vehicle on the track,” Bobo said.

According to Sunrail, train tracks are private property and crossing at unmarked areas, or walking on the tracks, is extremely dangerous and could have deadly results.

“It’s really important to be looking up to be watching your surroundings. If you do have earbuds, have one earbud in so you can hear like behind me right now.. that’s telling people, ‘Hey there’s a train coming through here,’” Bobo explained.

Rail Safety Week also comes as Brightline prepares to start services between Miami and Orlando this Friday.

“We do have Brightline starting soon over along the coast and all of those trains they are going to take a long time to stop if they do see something and you never know which train is going to be coming along and it really doesn’t matter so, please always stay off the tracks,” Bobo said.


Keep off the tracks

Do not stop on or walk along the tracks, and make sure your vehicle is not hanging over the rails.

Stop for gates

Gates are there for your safety. Trains can approach quickly from either direction at any time.

Avoid distractions

Be aware of your surroundings. Put the phone away and pause the music for a few seconds to cross the tracks safely.

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About the Author:

Ezzy Castro is a multimedia journalist on News 6's morning team who has a passion for telling the stories of the people in the Central Florida community. Ezzy worked at WFOR CBS4 in South Florida and KBMT in Beaumont, Texas, where she covered Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Being from Miami, Ezzy loves Cuban coffee and croquetas!