21 Instances In First 4-Plus Months Of 2018 Prompt Railroad To Make Safety Improvements On 300 Crossings

MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — GPS apps are apparently causing more confusion around railroad tracks than people realized.

According to the Long Island Rail Road, there have been 21 instances of confused drivers following directions and turning on to tracks in the first four-and-a-half months of 2018.

A woman drove her vehicle on to the train tracks at the Willis Avenue crossing back in March. (Photo: CBS2)

One such incident happened back in March as surveillance video obtained by CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff shows a driver making a left on to the tracks at the Willis Avenue crossing. That driver was able to get out safely before her vehicle was struck by an oncoming train.

“Shocking, it looked like she thought that was the road,” said Anthony Petito whose auto shop security camera recorded the incident.

The LIRR is making improvements to 300 train crossings in an effort to prevent drivers from driving on to tracks.

The LIRR is now taking action. As Gusoff reported Tuesday, the transit agency is erecting flexible poles and painting white stripes on roadways, fast-tracking safety improvements on 300 grade crossings because of the steep increase in confusion from GPS navigation.

“You just cant listen to the GPS no matter what, you have to see where you’re going,” said Mitchell Pally, MTA board member.

The LIRR hopes to have all of the upgrades complete by the end of 2018.

Gusoff will have more on this story during the CBS2 News at 6 p.m.


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