In a renewed effort to increase safety at the railroad tracks, the Broward Sheriff’s Office launched Operation Crossing Guard.
And in just the first four days, more than 200 citations were issued to motorists.
The department made the announcement on social media, reminding motorists and pedestrians “you are never going to beat the train.”
BSO partnered with Brightline and local police departments to increase surveillance at railroad crossings with both overt and covert officers to crack down, which has led to a rash of fatalities.
The breakdown of tickets is as follows:
- 86 tickets for stopping on the railroad tracks
- 52 for driving through or around closed crossing gate arms
- 40 for entering a grade crossing without sufficient space to clear
- 27 for blocking an intersection or crosswalk
- 8 for walking around closed crossing gate arms
In the last two months, three pedestrians and one driver were killed in train collisions in Pompano Beach and Oakland Park, involving the Brightline, Tri-Rail and FEC cargo trains.
In April, a truck sitting on the tracks in Wilton Manors was hit by the Brightline; there were no injuries. In March, a driver escaped with his life after colliding with the Brightline in Oakland Park.
The agencies announced Operation Crossing Guard during a June 3 press conference at the Fort Lauderdale Brightline station. They shared that tickets would range from $115 to $205. Unfortunately, four days later, an 84-year-old woman was killed in a collision with the Brightline in Oakland Park.
“Until we see a reduction in the incidents at the crossing gates, this operation and the enforcement is only going to continue,” said BSO Col. Steve Robson, the executive director of the Department and Preparedness and Response.