There are about 14,000 public and 9,000 private grade crossings along more than 40,000 kilometres of federally regulated railway tracks in Canada.
Look for the crossbuck symbol that indicates a roadway-railway crossing. Some more heavily travelled roadway-railway crossings have lights and bells and/or gates.
Listen for warning bells and whistles. Turn off, or turn down, distracting fans, heaters, radios and music until the crossing is safely cleared. Opening the window helps you hear better.
Never drive around lowered gates — it's illegal and deadly. If you suspect a signal is malfunctioning, call the 1-800 number posted on or near the crossing signal or your local law enforcement agency.
Never race a train to the crossing — even in a tie, you lose.
Do not get trapped on the tracks. Proceed through a roadway-railway crossing only if you are sure you can completely clear the crossing without stopping. Remember that the train is three feet wider than the tracks on both sides.
If your vehicle stalls on the tracks at a crossing, immediately get everyone out and far away from the tracks. Move in the direction that the train is approaching from to avoid being hit by debris.
When at a multiple-track crossing waiting for a train to pass, watch out for a second train on the other tracks, approaching from either direction.
Railway tracks, trestles, yards and equipment are private property. Walking or playing on them is illegal, and trespassers are subject to arrest and fines. Too often the penalty is death.
Do not walk, run, cycle or operate all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) on railway tracks, rights of way or through tunnels.
Cross tracks only at designated pedestrian or railway crossings. Observe and obey all warning signs and signals.
Do not attempt to hop aboard railway equipment at any time. A slip of the foot could cost you a limb or your life.