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Trains are dangerous because they don’t keep schedules.

Railway Crossing Signs | Pass a Road Test


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Hi there smart drivers.

Rick with Smart Drive Test talking to you today about the railway sign and railway crossings.

When I moved to BC's interior a couple of years ago, I was stationed in Kamloops, BC, Canada to do some training and I have to say that up to that point I'd lived in Ontario and Australia, and trains and railway crossings in terms of driving had been more or less off my radar.

Where railways are in relation to intersections can potentially prove dangerous to drivers.<p>This story could save your life!

Most of the ones in the east and most of the ones in Australia have been torn up.

So railway crossings didn't really feature much in my driving; however, in Kamloops, BC railway crossings are a big deal.

And where the school was there in Kamloops was not too far from the railway crossings.

You had to go over the railway tracks just as soon as you came out of the school.

The student stops behind the railway tracks and waits for the light to go green.

On the green he proceeds up to the intersection.

As soon as he gets to the intersection, the light goes red.

He stops and the trailer is hanging back over two sets of railway tracks.

A railroad crossing sign is regulatory.<p>If a train is present, you must stop a minimum of 5m (15ft) from the nearest track and wait.

Fortunately nothing happened, but I'll tell you, it was a few tense moments of sitting on railway tracks in a town where you don't know when the trains are coming.

We'll be right back to talk to you about railway crossings.


Hi there smart drivers.

Rick with Smart Drive Test - welcome back.

Today we're talking to you about railway crossings and the railway sign.

One of the reasons that trains are so dangerous is because trains don't keep schedules!

Trains Have the Right-of-Way...for obvious reasons!

You don't know when they're going to show up.

And the other thing that you need to know about trains especially for a road test - trains have the right of way.

You need to give trains the right-of-way.

Drivers Still Killed by Trains

50 to 60 people in Canada are still killed every year by trains.

In the United States you can multiply that number by ten and you'll probably come up with a fairly reasonable number for the number of people that are still killed in the United States by trains every year.

Half the people who are killed by trains are killed at night.

Kamloops, BC is a railhead for the Canadian National Railway.<p>Trains are dangerous to road traffic because these don't keep schedules.

They run into the side of the trains because they don't see them.

Multiple Train Track Crossings

And the other significant portion of people who are killed in car-train crashes are because there's multiple tracks and one of the trains is hidden by the other train.

So they don't see the train, drive onto the tracks, and are hit.

Road Markings, Warning Signs, Lights, Bells & Gates

Many railway crossings have cautionary signs that warn you beforehand that there's going to be a railway crossing.

There might be road markings.

All railway crossings that intersect with roadways have some sort of control.

This railway crossing has a stop sign.

They may also have lights and gates.

If there's a gate and the lights are flashing, you cannot proceed until the gate goes up.

Where to Stop to Wait for Train

You must wait - don't get on the track and have the gate come down on your car.

I've seen that happen too.

As well, stop 15 meters from the railway crossing.

If you're parking near a railway crossing - 15 meters or 50 feet from the railway crossing.

If you're stopping near railway crossings: five meters from the track; no farther than 50 meters back.

So 15 to 50 feet away from the railway crossing.

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Do NOT Shift Manual Transmission Over RR Tracks

For the purposes of a road test if you're driving a manual transmission - do not shift over railway tracks.

It's major demerits on a road test. 

Breaking Down On Railway Crossing

Finally, if you're unfortunate enough on a railway crossing to have your vehicle break down or you get stuck on the tracks for whatever reason, get clear of the vehicle and get all passengers out of the vehicle as quickly as possible.

Move at least 30 meters or a hundred feet away from the railway tracks and call 911 or call the local police.

All Railway Crossings Have Location

As well, as you can see here in the image the location of the crossing is right on the railway sign.

It'll either be on the front as it is here, or it'll be on the back side of the railway sign - so the exact location.

All railway crossings will have a location for the crossing on the sign.<p>Use this location when communicating with emergency services.

So when you call emergency services, make sure you have the location so they can send people out as quickly as possible to remove your vehicle off the railway crossing or whomever might be.

We all have cell phones in this day and age, so make sure you have that information to help out emergency services, so they can get you off the railway crossings as quickly as possible.

I'm Rick with Smart Drive Test.

Thanks very much for watching.

If you like what you see here share, subscribe, leave a comment down in the comment section.

All that helps us out.

Question for my smart drivers:

Have you ever been unfortunate enough that your vehicle broke down on a railway track?

If it did, leave the story down in the comments there.

All those stories help us out and help drivers out in case they find themselves in the same situation.

Thanks very much for watching.

Remember pick the best answer not necessarily the right answer.

Have a great day. Bye now.

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