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Driver's Ed Class Gets Lesson on Train Safety

Illinois is the second leading state in the country in the number of train crossing fatalities. (WRSP)

Illinois is the second leading state in the country in the number of train crossing fatalities.

On average more collisions happen when people are getting out of work.

"Any crossing could potentially be dangerous," said Railroad safety specialist Chip Pew.

Pew is teaching a driver’s education class about the dangers of being around train tracks.

"Typically Illinois ranks in the top five every year in number as far as crashes, injuries and deaths," said Pew.

Lincoln Community High School students took note to these alarming numbers.

Josie Schumann got her permit three weeks ago, and has to go over two sets of tracks on her drive to and from school

Josie said she's going to pay closer attention crossing knowing how long it takes for trains to stop.

"It takes a mile for a train to stop, which is pretty understandable when it's such a big train," said Schumann.

Lincoln is one of the cities the high speed rail is going to pass through in the upcoming years.

With the increasing of speeds, it's going to take longer for an engine to stop.

"Just because it looks like it's not moving very fast, it could be," said Pew.

The specialist has investigated 400 train fatalities in his lifetime.

He said looking at a train head on can cause an optical illusion.

Pew said this played a role into a death of Jacksonville woman's a few days earlier.

"I think the woman missed judged the speed and distance of the train," said Pew.

Josie said she's going to remember this lesson.

"Yes, I definitely am now," said Josie.

They've installed these gates on sidewalks for people who are walking across the tracks.

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