Tips for Train Safety

Safety Tips

  • Look twice: Look both ways and listen before crossing the tracks. Expect a train at any time and from either direction.
  • Heads Up: Avoid dangerous distractions such as texting, loud music or headphones that would prevent you from hearing an approaching train.
  • Stand back: Always stay behind the yellow lines at train stations. Enter or exit a station platform at designated areas.
  • Stay off the tracks: Train tracks, bridges and yards are private property. Never walk, bike, skateboard or run on or along the tracks; it’s illegal and dangerous. Cross only at designated rail crossings.
  • Hold hands: Hold hands with smaller children while at stations and crossings.
  • Just wait: Don’t ever try to “beat” a train. An approaching train is closer and moving faster than you think. Don’t assume the operator sees you and do not step in front of a train for any reason.
  • See something? Say something: Report suspicious packages, activities, and/or persons by calling 911.
  • Remember to obey all warning signs and signals. Look, Listen, Live! Near Train Tracks... Stay Focused, Stay Alive.
  • Remember that approaching trains are always closer and moving faster than they appear. Always yield the right-of-way to a train.

More Ways to Stay Safe

As a passenger, and even as a motorist, there are specific things that you can do to help us achieve our goal of a safe, user-friendly commuter rail service.

While On Board the Train

  • Always pay attention to announcements made by the train crew.
  • Report any suspicious packages or behaviors immediately to the train crew.
  • Keep all of your belongings close at hand.
  • Keep all children under direct adult supervision.
  • Try to remain seated while the train is in motion. If you need to move while the train is in motion, please use handrails in the stairwells and the handles on chair tops while moving through the aisles.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • While seated, look around your area to locate the nearest emergency exits.
  • Do not run on board the train.
  • If you notice that another passenger may need First Aid, immediately contact a train crew member; they are certified to operate our on board defibrillators and First Aid kits.
  • If you notice a safety/security threat posed by a fellow passenger(s), report it immediately to the train crew.
Woman riding the train

At the Stations / Platforms

  • Stay well behind the yellow line at all times. Do not sit or stand on these lines while waiting for a train.
  • Never try to board a train: once the departure whistle blows, when the 'doors closing' signal sounds or when train crews announce the train doors are closing.
  • Keep children under constant adult supervision.
  • Expect a train at any time, on any tracks, in either direction.
  • Remember that Amtrak passenger trains and BNSF freight trains share our tracks; expect them to be traveling at speeds of 55 to 79 miles per hour through our stations.
  • Never place any objects, such as rocks or coins, on the tracks, as they can shoot back at bystanders with the speed of a bullet, and may cause severe injuries.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings, especially from dusk to dawn.
  • Do not ride bicycles or skateboards on the platform, for the safety of other passengers.
  • Never step on the railroad tracks, ties, or ballast rocks surrounding the tracks.
  • Pay attention to any audible/visual announcements from the train staff at station message boards regarding safety, delays, warnings, or other information.
  • In case of an emergency, call 911. To get connected to New Mexico Rail Runner Express Customer Service, call 505-245-7245.
  • Please do not drop off passengers in areas designated as "Bus Lanes".
Youth at a Train Station

While Driving

  • Don't allow yourself to be distracted by electronic devices, passengers, or other things that could take your mind off of crossing the train tracks safely.
  • Be aware of all traffic signs that alert you about nearby railroad tracks.
  • Stop at, or slightly behind, the solid white stop line painted on the roadway just before the crossing gates.
  • If the crossing is on a dirt/private road, always look both ways before proceeding across the tracks.
  • Never stop your vehicle on the tracks, especially in heavy traffic.
  • Never allow any portion of your stopped vehicle to hang over the tracks: If you don’t fit, don’t commit!
  • Never pass another car or shift gears while crossing train tracks.
  • Trains always have the right-of-way at a crossing; yield to the train.
  • Never, never, never try to beat a train. Even if you tie, you lose.
  • The train you see is closer and faster-moving than you think. If you see a train approaching, wait for it to go by before you proceed across the tracks.
  • Because of its size, it takes a train a much longer distance to come to a stop than any automobile. It is much easier to move a car than to stop a train.
  • At a multiple track crossing, while waiting for a train to pass, watch out for a second train on the other tracks, approaching from either direction.
  • At certain rail road crossings designated as "Quiet Zones", trains will not sound their horns.
  • Be aware of vehicles that will stop at all train crossings (except those that are marked exempt), such as Hazardous Materials transporters and buses. Never try to pass them; highway/rail crossings are a no-passing zone.
  • To report a malfunctioning crossing gate, or for notification of persons spotted walking on/near the railroad tracks, please call customer service at 866-795-7245.
  • Either underneath the crossbuck sign or on the silver bungalow (box) located near the crossing, you can find information about the street name, railroad milepost number (“RRMP”), Department of Transportation identification number and letter (“DOT 123456X”), and an emergency phone number to report safety or security issues at a crossing.
  • Failure to obey traffic signs at a highway-rail grade crossing, including stopping beyond the solid white stop line, crossing gates, and “stop here on red” signs, is a minimum fine of $150 in New Mexico.
Train at crossing