Officers team up with railroad company to promote train safety - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Officers team up with railroad company to promote train safety

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WATERLOO (KWWL) - Safety and patience are encouraged around Iowa's railroad system days after a deadly incident on the train tracks in Independence.

Law enforcement agencies stepped up enforcement along the tracks and at crossings on Saturday.

"You have to have the utmost respect for these things that are traveling behind me because they're big and they will make a mess if things go bad," said Trooper Mark Sigwarth of the Iowa State Patrol.

Sigwarth worked alongside about a dozen other officers from four agencies during a special assignment to make sure people stay safe at railroad crossings in Waterloo.

Some law enforcement officers hopped inside the train cars to catch people and/or vehicles violating laws near railroad tracks.

According to Sigwarth, officers issued four citations for railroad crossing violations within 90 minutes.

"By law as soon as these lights start flashing, you have to stop," said Sigwarth.

"It's an inconvenience sometimes, but it's called patience," he said.

Additionally, tickets were also issued to pedestrians who were on or near railroad tracks which is also illegal.

Francis Edeker, the state coordinator for Operation Lifesaver, said more than 10 people died and more than 25 people were hurt at railroad tracks in Iowa last year.
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