Nov 5, 2018
OTTAWA, Ontario- Today, Operation Lifesaver (OL) and Metrolinx unveiled a virtual reality (VR) video to encourage passengers to keep themselves safe around railway tracks and trains. The video is the latest addition to the Look. Listen. Live. virtual reality rail safety campaign first launched by OL last April. The new video features a familiar scenario: a group of passengers getting off a commuter train onto a station platform.
Filmed from the point of view of one of those commuters, the video immerses viewers in a three-dimensional environment and gives them the unsettling – and hopefully unforgettable – experience of how quickly and quietly a train can sneak up on them.
Every year, dozens of Canadians – especially young Canadians – are killed or seriously injured in railway crossing and trespassing incidents. These incidents are devastating for the individuals involved, their friends and family, railway employees, first responders and communities. And virtually all of these incidents could be avoided.
“Our message to rail passengers is simple: please obey railway warning signs and signals – they’re there to keep you safe. Failing to do so could have terrifying – or deadly – consequences,” said Sarah Mayes, National Director of Operation Lifesaver Canada.
“Operation Lifesaver has the important mission of keeping Canadians safe around railways. The virtual reality experience will help connect with people, especially young people, who may just think twice the next time they encounter a rail crossing,” said George Bell, Vice President, Safety & Security for Metrolinx, and Chair of Operation Lifesaver Canada’s Board of Directors.
According to the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, in 2017, there were 223 rail-related crossing and trespassing incidents in Canada, which killed 72 people and seriously injured another 44.
To coincide with today’s video launch, Metrolinx will be setting up a booth equipped with VR headsets in Toronto’s Union Station and encouraging rail passengers to experience the video for themselves. Canadians will also be encouraged to share the video on social media, along with the hashtag #SHARETHESCARE.
Operation Lifesaver wishes to thank Metrolinx, Peter Mohyla (Metrolinx), and the South Simcoe Police Service for their assistance in the production of the new Look. Listen. Live. video.
Operation Lifesaver is a national public rail-safety program sponsored by Transport Canada, the Railway Association of Canada and its members, including CN, CP, VIA Rail, exo, West Coast Express, Metrolinx and Genesee & Wyoming, among others. Through partnerships with safety councils, police, the trucking industry and community groups, Operation Lifesaver works to save lives by educating Canadians about the hazards of rail crossings and trespassing on railway property.