LAKE CHARLES – This morning Louisiana State Police Troop D, Lake Charles Police Department, and the Union Pacific Police Department in conjunction with Union Pacific Railroad conducted a railroad grade crossing enforcement detail on LA Hwy 14 (Gerstner Memorial Drive) in Lake Charles. Troopers and officers were looking for drivers who fail to yield the right of way as a train approached a crossing as well as drivers of trucks carrying hazardous materials who fail to stop and check for a train as required by law.
Today’s enforcement detail resulted in a total of 83 traffic citations being issued including 71 for failure to obey a signal indicating the approach of a train, 2 for driving under suspension, 3 for no driver’s license, 3 seat belt violations, 1 for an expired motor vehicle inspection, 1 for no vehicle insurance, and 2 for an expired license plate. Additionally, one misdemeanor summons was issued for trespassing.
Louisiana state law requires motorists to obey signals at railroad crossings that indicate a train is approaching including flashing red lights and/or lowered gates. Failure to obey these signals may result in a fine of up to $200.00 and up to 30 days in jail for a first offense with higher fines and increased jail time possible for additional violations. The fine for racing a train is up to $1,000. More information concerning rail safety may be found online by visiting the Operation Lifesaver website, www.oli.org.