Operation Lifesaver turns 50

2022 marks the 50th anniversary of Operation Lifesaver. Since OL’s start in 1972 collisions at railroad crossings have dropped by 84 percent. However, the work continues, because every three hours in the U.S. a person or vehicle is hit by a train.

In North Dakota, farm vehicles are a frequent sight on our roadways, and they often cross railroad tracks, both on public and private land. This year Operation Lifesaver is releasing new resources in hopes of helping farmers and farm machine operators to stay safe and avoid incidents around trains and railroad tracks.

OLI Executive Director Rachel Maleh says, “The new PSA and rail safety education materials for young people along with the rail safety sticker provide actionable advice to farm communities on how to work safely near railroad tracks and trains as well as what to do in the event a tractor or other vehicle is stalled or stuck on the tracks.”

Railroad deaths totaled 757 in 2020, a decrease of more than 12 percent from 2019. 5,479 injuries resulted from railroad incidents according to the National Safety Council’s Injury Facts.

Help lower those numbers even further, get educated on railway safety. You can request a free presentation from Operation Lifesaver of the Dakotas or become a volunteer. Contact Valerie Fischer the Operation Lifesaver Coordinator with the North Dakota Safety Council. Email her at valerief@ndsc.org or call 701-751-6114