Railroad officials joined forces with Fresno police on Monday to emphasize rail safety in the city, part of a “safety train” outreach by the San Joaquin Joint Powers Authority, the agency that oversees Amtrak in the central San Joaquin Valley.
Also taking part were local elected officials, law enforcement officers and representatives from Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, one of the Valley’s main freight haulers, and California Operation Lifesaver.
Railroad and Fresno police officers kept watch at crossings, ready to cite motorists and pedestrians for ignoring crossing gates and for trespassing.
Fresno police Capt. Michael Reid said that over the past 16 months, eight pedestrians and motorists have been killed by trains in the city, so rail safety programs such as “Safety Train” are a particularly important way to get the message out. “No better way to do it than this event today,” he said.