(NBC News) – Distracted drivers approaching a railroad crossing may be behind a rather remarkable statistic on railroad safety.
In one in five collisions involving trains and cars, the car hits the train, not the other way around.
“People might be distracted, they may not be thinking about what’s in front of them,” said Joyce Rose, president of Operation Lifesaver.
She’s been trying to figure out why there’s been an increase in recent years of trains and people colliding.
“Every three hours, someone, either a vehicle or a person, is hit by a train in the United States,” said Rose.
A new safety campaign’s slogan is “See Tracks, Think Train” because many collisions occur at crossings where trains and people intersect more often.
It’s where nearly 2100 wrecks last year, killed over 250 people.
However, nearly twice as many pedestrians were killed walking on or around railroad tracks.