Railroad lines pose safety and trespassing issues

Railroad lines pose safety and trespassing issues The idea that all railroad rights-of-way are open for hunting has long been a misconception for South Dakota hunters.

With pheasant season open and many big game seasons right around the corner, Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern (DM&E) Railroad officials remind hunters that their railroad rights-of-way are closed to hunting, and extreme caution is urged when hunting or retrieving downed game near these areas.

Mike Ball, manager of safety and training, mechanical, for Cedar American Rail Holdings who operate DM&E Railroad said safety along the railroad continues to be a major concern during hunting seasons.

"Hunters, concentrating on the pursuit of game, many times do not observe trains as they approach railroad crossings," he said. "Highway-rail and private-rail crossings are dangerous intersections where the potential for accidents exists, and many engineers and crew members have near misses each year with hunters and trespassers. This is due in part to an irregular schedule of trains, but most accidents and near misses are attributed to the inattention of motor vehicle operators and pedestrians."

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