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Treasure Valley officers ride the rails to enforce traffic at railroad crossings

Posted at 5:19 PM, Mar 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-16 20:41:13-04

On Thursday, some police in the Treasure Valley swapped out their patrol cars for trains. All to be on the lookout for drivers who failed to stop at activated railroad crossings.

"A train weighs about 4,000 times as much as your car, that's a 4000:1 weight ratio. That's like your car running over a soda can," explained Travis Campbell of Operation Lifesaver.

Operation Lifesaver is a non-profit that is dedicated to saving lives at railroad crossings. They put officers in train cars so they can spot drivers who ignore the signs and call them into officers on the ground.
Those drivers could face a $90 dollar fine for failure to yield. Officials say they do it all not to collect money but to save lives.

While we may be only three months into 2017, There have already been two vehicle-train collisions in the Gem State, one of them fatal.
"A lot of people that are blowing through the lights or the stop signs are actually being inattentive meaning they're not even paying attention," said Officer Adnan Rudan of the Meridian Police Department.

Officials say they average 60 fines every time they do this exercise. They want to remind the public if you see tracks think train.

"They're an intersection, and just like you would handle any intersection, you turn your head left, you turn your head right and you look. Make sure your route is clear before you processed," said Campbell.