More than 80 first-graders welcomed Brainy with high-fives and hugs Sept. 10 at New Bern, N.C., where Norfolk Southern operated its 11th of 14 planned Operation Lifesaver trains this year to help educate the public about highway-rail grade crossing safety.
Norfolk Southern’s Operation Lifesaver train operated round-trip between New Bern and Goldsboro. Some 80 adults from seven eastern North Carolina cities from Raleigh to New Bern rode on the train, including state and local government officials and police officers.
Brainy is part of Norfolk Southern’s “Train Your Brain” campaign to remind people of all ages to be smart around railroad crossings. Everyone participating in the New Bern event received Train Your Brain T-shirts, fact sheets, car decals, and other materials to help spread the safety message. Operation Lifesaver is an international rail safety education program dedicated to ending collisions, fatalities, and injuries at highway-rail grade crossings and on railroad rights of way. Last year in the United States, 339 people died and 986 were injured in 2,728 vehicle-train collisions. In addition, 486 pedestrians were killed and 393 people were injured while walking or playing on railroad tracks or on railroad equipment or along railroad rights of way. North Carolina ranked sixth nationally in the number of pedestrians killed by trains.