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Union Pacific Railroad Trains Alert Drivers during Sugar Cane Season

Union Pacific Railroad engineers will begin sounding train whistles at all railroad crossings between Livonia and Avondale during sugar cane season, an effort that resulted in zero collisions involving trains and sugar cane trucks last year. The precautionary measure begins October 1 and concludes December 31.

The Federal Railroad Administration requires railroads to sound train whistles at all public crossings. Most of the railroad crossings along sugar cane fields lead to private properties, which do not require engineers to sound the whistles.

This is the second year engineers will sound train whistles at all railroad crossings during sugar cane season, which affects Union Pacific's line that runs through southeast Louisiana. The three-month effort includes crossings located in Addis, Plaquemine, Donaldsonville and Luling.

"The number of trucks crossing the tracks increases during sugar cane season and sounding train whistles at these crossings will help us alert drivers of approaching trains," said Roger Lambeth, Union Pacific superintendent - Transportation Services. "We hope the heightened awareness reminds drivers to use caution when they approach the railroad tracks and leads to another safe sugar cane season."

Sugar cane farmers and railroads are a vital part of southern Louisiana's economy. Union Pacific offers the following rail safety tips that can keep drivers and pedestrians safe throughout the year:

  • Always expect a train and look both ways before crossing railroad tracks.
  • Wait for trains and do not attempt to beat approaching trains.
  • Do not stop your vehicle on railroad tracks.
  • Avoid distractions such as loud music, texting or talking on cell phones while crossing railroad tracks.
  • Pedestrians should cross the tracks only at designated railroad crossings.
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