Rail safety nonprofit Operation Lifesaver (OL), on behalf of the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA), launched a new safety campaign using bus shelter posters and onboard video public service announcements to remind pedestrian commuters to "Stay Focused! Stay Alive!"
"Our new PSA reminds pedestrians to stay focused, especially near train tracks," says Helen Sramek, president of Operation Lifesaver. "Pedestrians face multiple electronic distractions — cell phones, texting, mobile video and Internet — all with deadly consequences, because there is no second chance if you meet a train on the tracks."
Primary funding for the spots comes through a grant from the Federal Transit Administration.
Georgia Operation Lifesaver coordinated the project, which includes bus shelter posters and airings of OL's "Distracted Pedestrian" PSA on digital screens inside MARTA trains.
In addition, "Distracted Pedestrians," a 30-second public service announcement, will appear through May on MARTA trains for riders to watch as they commute. The safety spot features a harried executive rushing to work, barking orders while sending last-minute instructions to employees via cell phone. He runs into other commuters and a street musician in his haste. Unfortunately, he ignores the oncoming train as well.
In the last decade more than 9,000 pedestrians have been injured or killed while walking on railroad tracks or rights of way, based on Federal Railroad Administration statistics.