RALEIGH -- The N.C. Department of Transportation, local law enforcement officers, and officials with the CSX railroad are warning people to stay off of railroad tracks following the deaths of 9 people who have been hit by trains in North Carolina so far this year.
In Johnston County Wednesday, Smithfield and county law enforcement officers held a crossing blitz to remind drivers of the danger.
"If a train's running 30 miles per hour and it's one mile long, it's only going to take two minutes to get off the crossing. Is two minutes worth your life? And it's not," offered CSX Safety Coordinator Billy Moye.
The state is already on pace to meet or surpass the 20 deaths that occurred last year. NCDOT has issued a warning about the dangers of trespassing on railroad company property.
Officials warn that trains can show up at any time and can't stop quickly to avoid hitting someone in their path. Freight trains don't run on strict schedules, while passenger trains can be delayed and show up unexpectedly.
Police will fine or arrest people found walking along railroad tracks, playing in the area or taking pictures on the tracks.
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North Carolina officials remind people to stay away from railroad tracks