Whether travelling by foot or in any vehicle, railway safety is of great importance.

September 21-27 marks National Rail Safety Week across Canada. The Canadian Safety Train Express (CSTE) is based in Cudworth and provides rail safety education to students and young adults all over Western Canada.

"Our program runs year-round and uses people who have worked on the railway for quite a few years to bring that experience into the classrooms," said Amy Lintick, director of operations and programs with Canadian Safety Train Express.

The education program includes educational materials, safety awareness materials, a simulation machine, and trains themselves to influence the audience. Amid COVID-19, the program is shifting to a stronger online presence.

"Essentially interaction with railway equipment is dangerous and it almost always results in significant consequences," stated Lintick.

Ultimately, a run-in with a train can be fatal with every incident being avoidable. Younger children are encouraged to stop, look, and listen for trains and to cross the tracks at a crossing. While drivers are reminded to never attempt to beat a train and look both ways twice before crossing at an uncontrolled intersection.

For the second year, CSTE has partnered with the Government of Saskatchewan for National Rail Safety Week to deliver over 3,500 augmented-reality railway safety activity books in English and French to grade four students located near short-line railways in the province.

Each year there are 2,100 North Americans seriously injured or killed in railway crossing and trespassing incidents. The province of Saskatchewan alone is home to 2,000 kilometres of privately-owned short-line railway track that connects to more than 6,000 kilometres of federally-regulated track within the province.

In addition, CSTE is excited to unveil a new augmented-realty feature in its safety program and release three contests for students to participate to win prizes or a $1000 scholarship. The contests will run until December 1, 2020.

For more information on the program, Railway Safety Books, and contest details, visit canadiansafetytrain.ca.