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County joins others to bring awareness to railroad safety

Posted on 09/25/2017
County joins others to bring awareness to railroad safety

Railroads have a long and rich history in Weld County. In fact, Weld County’s almost 300 railroad crossings represent approximately 10% of all the railroad crossings in the state, according to Mike McCoy, Operation Lifesaver state coordinator, who, along with Steve Jankowski of the Federal Railroad Association, was on hand for a proclamation reading by the Board of Commissioners.

The Board, during their Monday meeting, proclaimed September 25-29 as Railroad Safety Week in an effort to help bring awareness to the importance of pedestrian and motorist safety near railroad crossings.

“This is the first year for a national railroad safety week,” said McCoy, who went on to thank Weld County for participating in the promotion of the week and promoting the overall goal of reducing crashes and trespass incidents along railroad lines and property.

“Thank you for being here,” said Commissioner Chair Julie Cozad. “And thank you for helping to bring awareness to the public regarding railroad safety – a huge step toward prevention.”

Jankowski echoed McCoy in stressing the importance of reducing the number of accidents nation-wide as well as the importance of working with stakeholders such as public utility companies, departments of transportation and local partners like municipal and county governments.

Working to improve safety conditions around railroads has long been a county priority. The latest project is bringing the county, the Highway 85 Coalition, Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and Union Pacific Railroad together to talk about possibly closing some accesses off of Highway 85, which would lead to fewer points of conflict between motorists and trains.

To learn more about Railroad Safety Week, including statistics, educational resources and more, please visit