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Signs of Life

Public highway-rail grade crossings have been marked with one or more of the following warning devices for your safety by both state highway departments and the railroad companies. Learn what they are and watch for them. With these warning devices, and caution on your part, highway-rail grade crossing crashes should never happen.

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Advance Warning Signs
Advance warning signs mean a highway-rail grade crossing is ahead and are located at sufficient distance to allow you to stop (if necessary) before reaching the crossing.
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Pavement Markings
Pavement markings, consisting of a R X R and stop line, may be painted on the pavement in front of the crossing. Always stay behind the painted stop line while waiting for a passenger train.
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Railroad Crossbuck Signs
Railroad Crossbuck signs are found at most public crossings. These signs should be treated the same as a yield sign. The driver should slow down and be prepared to stop upon sighting a train. If there is more than one track, a sign below the crossbuck indicates the number of tracks at this crossing.
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Flashing Light Signals
Flashing light signals are used with crossbuck signs at many highway-rail crossings. Always stop when the lights begin to flash. This means a train is coming. If there is more than one track, make sure all tracks are clear before crossing.
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Gates
Gates are used with flashing light signals at certain crossings. Stop when the lights begin to flash and before the gate begins to lower across your road lane. Do not attempt to cross before the gates are raised and the lights have stopped flashing.
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