By Jeremy Lipps, @Digital_Lipps

This is what a near miss looks like on Twitter and in the dispatch notification we receive:


This is what a near miss actually looks like:

At about the 1:00 mark, a group of people try to make it across the tracks, against a flashing crossing gate in the down position with an express train quickly approaching. One man is lucky he made it home that day. Don’t Shortcut Life:

  • Look, Listen, Live!
  • Never go around the gates! The Gate Means Wait
  • Pay attention near tracks.
  • Watch out for a second train.
  • Expect a train on any track, at any time.

For more safety information about using Caltrain and staying safe, visit our safety tips page:

Or visit Operation Lifesaver for rail safety information, stats and stories.

Reddit AMA: Life on the Line – Rail Safety

April 1, 2 -3 p.m. Pacific (5 – 6 p.m. EST)

Join Caltrain Transit Police Chief of Protective Services Dave Triolo, Communications Manager Jayme Ackemann and Community Affairs Officer Tasha Bartholomew in a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA). This is your chance to ask anything you ever wanted to know about Caltrain’s Rail Safety program and how you can help maintain a safe environment when you or your loved ones are near the tracks.

Link to come.


  1. Bullet trains crossing pedestrian walkways… I’m all for natural selection but this is kinda ridiculous, build a pedestrian archway to go over the tracks…

    • There are gates that people go under/go around all the time. There are even signs on the crossing that say how it is a crime to go under/around the gates when they are down/lights are flashing. I was raised between 2 train tracks and I walked home from school every day without ever being even remotely close to being hit by a train because I wasn’t a damn idiot like this guy was. I bet you anything if the conductor on the other train (that the guy was late arriving for) denied him boarding due to going around the downed gates (that are there for his own safety,) he probably also threw a hissy fit and probably even got violent/hostile. I see it all the time. The solution is simple. Get there early and be ready for when your train arrives and don’t be a damn idiot. It’s not rocket science. We should be getting smarter as a species, not dumberererererererer. er.

      • I agree with you and have NEVER gone around a crossing gate. I am triple cautious around the tracks.
        However, I think many people are doing the math and if they miss their train, they may have up to an hour wait on the weekends or late at night. They think it is worth the risk to duck under the gate. I don’t agree with that calculation, but it is what it is. I missed a weekend local at RWC because the north gate stayed down so long that they closed the doors before I could tag Clipper and board the train. It was very aggravating.

    • Fortunately as stations are upgraded, they usually do include walkways or tunnels to cross the tracks. But there is no money allocated to upgrade all the existing stations.

  2. I’ve seen a video that was recorded some years ago in Chicago. Someone did the exact same thing, but they did not make it across in time. There are two versions. One cuts just before impact. The other does not. It only takes a few seconds for a commuter train to go by. Your life is not worth it! The affect on the train crew is also horrible. The engineer is the last one to see the person alive, and the conductor is the first one to see them dead.

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