Railroad warns pedestrian traffic | SierraSun.com

Railroad warns pedestrian traffic

Jeff Clemetson, Sierra Sun

While working as a flagman near the Highway 267 bridge construction, Union Pacific conductor Daryl Stinchfield noticed something that disturbed him – an “incredible” amount of pedestrian traffic on the train tracks.

“These people don’t understand that it’s dangerous to be on railroad tracks,” he said. “It’s also trespassing, it’s against the law.”

In one instance, two “young ladies” were twice warned not to cross the tracks but still continued to use them. Stinchfield called the Nevada County Sheriff’s Office but the patrolman arrived too late.

Part of the problem, he said, is that there is no way to get from Olympic Heights to the river without crossing the tracks or walking all the way around through Glenshire.

Nevada County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Gary Jacobson said most of the problems the NCSO has dealt with involving trespassing on the tracks were from transients sleeping too close to the rails, although he said that it is known that people cross the tracks regularly.

In 2000, Union Pacific reported 463 fatal accidents and 414 injury accidents involving trespassers.

California led the nation in trespassing accidents, with 72 fatalities and 45 injuries.