Officials Renew Call For Driver Safety at Railroad Crossings Across Florida

An urgent call is being made for drivers to watch for trains more intently at railroad crossings as the nation's top railroad regulators are sounding the alarm.

Someone is hit by a train every three hours across the nation, according to the Federal Railroad Administration. The leading cause of death in those instances is drivers trying to beat the train.

Florida has the dubious distinction of being in the top ten for rail crossing accidents, ranked ninth.

In 2015 – some of the latest numbers available – the Federal Railroad Administration says there were 76 collisions at crossings in the state. Ten people died and another 39 were injured.

Officials say the early morning hours can be the most dangerous.

“It’s a high risk times, so it gets dark early,” said Sarah Feinberg from the FRA. “It takes longer in the morning to get light. The weather’s not great”

A moving train can take more than a mile to stop – even with brakes applied - that’s more than 18 football fields.

Officials advise to never be closer than 15 feet to the tracks when the crossing arms are down.

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