Rail safety leader 'honored to be honored'

Posted on December 22, 2014 by Joyce Rose - Also by this author

OLI partnered with a number of transit agencies across the U.S. to raise awareness on safety issues with its“See Tracks? Think Train!” campaign (billboard art shown).
OLI partnered with a number of transit agencies across the U.S. to raise awareness on safety issues with its“See Tracks? Think Train!” campaign (billboard art shown).
Congratulations to METRO Magazine on celebrating its 110th year of serving the rail and transit industry! I was excited and, frankly, stunned to learn that I was named one of METRO’s 20 “Most Influential People of the Decade” as part of the magazine’s observance of this milestone. Being included in the company of these well-known and respected transportation professionals and policymakers is a rewarding and humbling experience, and underscores the benefits of working together to further improve the safety and efficiency of public transportation.

RELATED: Reinforcing Rail Safety to Prevent Crossing and Trespassing Incidents

As President and CEO of Operation Lifesaver Inc. (OLI), the national rail safety education organization whose mission is to end collisions, deaths and injuries at highway-rail grade crossings and on rail property, it’s my view that being recognized as an individual who has favorably influenced the public transportation industry in the last 10 years reflects the positive reputation of Operation Lifesaver in the transit community.

During my 25 years as a Congressional staffer, I strongly supported effective public transportation and providing consistent and adequate funding to achieve that goal. Several pieces of legislation that I helped develop, which went on to be enacted by Congress — SAFETEA-LU, PRIIA, and MAP 21 — feature public transportation and passenger rail provisions meant to strengthen, improve and grow these services in the U.S.

It’s exciting to see the continuing rise in transit and passenger rail ridership. However, as this sector continues its growth there is a need for an increased national focus on transit and passenger rail safety. This is where Operation Lifesaver comes in. The greatest area of risk in transit or passenger rail safety is people driving, walking, or bicycling in an unsafe manner around crossings and tracks, or acting carelessly on station platforms. Operation Lifesaver acts to educate the public about these risks, and teach safe and responsible behavior around railroads and transit systems — whether as a passenger, driver, cyclist or pedestrian. This year we have partnered with a number of transit agencies across the U.S. to raise awareness on safety issues with our “See Tracks? Think Train!” campaign.

Two of my fellow influential honorees from METRO Magazine’s list are helping lead the charge to improve the safety of our nation’s transit systems.

Under the leadership of Peter Rogoff, former Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Administrator and now Under Secretary for Policy at the U.S. DOT, FTA promulgated draft rules that recommend the adoption of a comprehensive Safety Management System approach for transit safety. Public outreach and education programs, like Operation Lifesaver, can be an integral part of an effective Safety Management System, and my organization is looking forward to working directly with transit agencies and operators of public transportation on improving safety through public education and outreach.

Since I began my tenure as OLI President, Michael Melaniphy, president of the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), has done everything in his power to support and cooperatively partner with Operation Lifesaver.  A collaborative agreement between APTA and OLI is allowing our two organizations to jointly develop educational and public outreach safety products, partner on the distribution of safety campaign materials, and ensure that our organizations’ policies and positions on rail and transit safety are consistent. In the coming year, OLI is looking forward to working with APTA on a new safety education program for transit bus operators regarding highway-rail grade crossing safety.  

Again, I am honored to be a part of METRO Magazine’s list of Most Influential People of the Decade, and I look forward to greater collaboration to improve safety in the transit industry in the next decade — and beyond.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More Safety Corner Blog Posts

May 15, 2018

How Transit Managers Can Stop the Blame Game to Create a Culture of Safety

When a bus is in an accident or experiences a mechanical issue that causes service delays, the incident typically prompts an investigation to determine the root cause, assign blame, and hand down a punishment.

May 1, 2018

Don’t Let Sleepiness Derail Your Health & Safety

A recent CDC analysis found that the jobs with the highest rates of short sleep duration were communications equipment operators (58.2%), other transportation workers (54.0%) and rail transportation workers (52.7%).

May 1, 2018

How to Maximize the Lifecycle of Trains, Infrastructure Safely, Efficiently

Reports of passenger rail accidents dot the news cycle, often citing lack of modernized infrastructure as a leading cause. Despite these facts, it is simply not realistic to expect commuter and subway systems to be overhauled overnight.

February 13, 2018

Danger Ahead: Sleep Loss, Safety, and You

Sleep loss leading to human fatigue is a serious issue affecting the safety of the traveling public in all modes of transportation. Simply defined, sleep loss is an inability to receive a proper amount and quality of sleep on a regular basis.

February 6, 2018

Training Bus Documentation…Just the Facts, Please!

I will be touching on the importance of proper documentation with regard to the basic skills performance of the student bus operator on the training bus.

See More

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation

Please sign in or register to .    Close