Rail Awareness in Nevada

Crossing Gates Are There For A Reason

On Monday, May 2, 2022 a 27 year old male lost his life due to a rash decision at a rail crossing in Pompano Beach, Florida. This young father on his way to work drove around the gates and lights that signaled a train was coming. The conductor of the train said that he believes the driver was trying to beat the train. BSO: Driver killed in Brightline train crash tried to get around crossing arms (

On Tuesday, May 3, 2022 a 52 year old male also lost his life in a situation that could have been avoided in Hollywood, Florida. Police stated that the arms and lights at the crossing were functioning properly. Witnesses said that he was chasing the train, saw that the arms were down and he tried to zig-zag around them.  Jeep driver is second man in two days to die in crash with Brightline train (

Railroads place gates at crossings, along with bells and flashing lights for a reason. The reason is for your safety - to keep you alive!

The question we ask is, "Why would someone intentionally decide to drive around down gates with flashing lights and a bell ringing - indicating an imminent train?"

Let's look at one of the excuses that people give.

I don't want to wait for a train, I'll be late and I can beat the train thru the crossing. Unfortunately, the two men mentioned above will not be late for anything again. The Brightline trains involved in the above mentioned driver negligence have operating speeds up to 125 MPH. Most people do not realize that judging the speed of an oncoming train is very difficult. As you are sitting waiting for the train, it is very difficult to judge the speed of the train due to the angle of the train approaching you and the size of the locomotive. These two things combined make it seem that the train is further away and traveling slower than it actually is. What will you do when you come to a rail crossing with the arms down, lights flashing and bells ringing?

When we get in a hurry or worry about being late, we can make irrational and hasty decisions. What should our response be when we encounter down rail arms, flashing lights and bells? We stop and wait. Whatever time we think we might save by going around the gates is not worth the risk. Ask the families of these two men and the many others that have attempted to beat a train by going around the down gates and not survived.  Each of us needs to decide before we get in the car every time, that we will abide by the warning devices at rail crossings. If we intentionally decide beforehand, the decision has already been made to stop and wait, thus reducing the chances of making a hasty and irreversible decision. What will you do?

You do not need to be a statistic! Stop and wait!




Go Back


Blog Search