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USA: Trespassing is leading cause of rail-related deaths - CDC

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention : Monday, July 05, 1999
The leading cause of railroad-related death in the United States is "trespassing," which accounted for 536 deaths in 1998. Trespassers are usually pedestrians who are walking along or across railroad tracks. In a study on trespassing in Georgia, 288 persons were injured while trespassing on railroad tracks from 1990-1996. Forty-six percent of the injuries were fatal. Most trespassers were male and between 20 to 49 years of age. Incidents were more common on weekends and at night. Most trespassers were injured in the same city in which they lived. Many persons were intoxicated at the time of injury. In many incidents, trespassers apparently did not hear the train horn or misjudged the speed or location of the train. The latter problem was more common when a train is approaching on one of multiple parallel sets of tracks.

South Africa: Cape Metrorail conducted a similar study a few years ago with the Medical Researce Council (Western Cape) and found similar results regarding the alcohol content of the persons involved. Sources:


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