CHICAGO (CBS) – The CTA has launched a new public service campaign to warn riders to stay off the tracks, after the number of people who died after going on tracks went up last year.
WBBM Newsradio’s Nancy Harty reports the CTA and emergency crews responded to 349 reports of people jumping or falling on tracks last year – in many cases to retrieve cell phones or other belongings they had dropped. That was up from 336 such reports in 2011, and the number of fatalities from those incidents jumped from 9 to 11.
Through July this year, there have been seven such fatalities – dying either from the fall, being hit by a train, or getting electrocuted by the third rail.
The CTA is putting up ads at its stations and trains, reminding riders its trains travel as fast as 55 mph, and don’t always stop at every station.
“You can live for a few minutes without it. If you drop your phone on the tracks, don’t jump down to get it. Inform a CTA employee, who will help you,” the ads read.
Posters will start appearing this week on rail cars, digital signs, and ad boards at train stations.