Tuesday, February 26, 2013

FTA, OLI make rail transit safety education grants available

Operation Lifesaver, Inc.(OLI), and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) partnered to make grant funds available to transit agencies and other governmental entities for rail transit safety education and public awareness initiatives.

"Passenger rail and transit are experiencing ridership growth," said Joyce Rose, president and CEO of Operation Lifesaver. "These FTA-funded grant projects help our state programs work with local transit agencies and government organizations to make a difference in rail safety in their communities."

FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff said, "The FTA is pleased to partner with Operation Lifesaver because as rail transit expands in communities across the country, it is essential that drivers and pedestrians have the education they need to remain safe near trains, tracks and at crossings."

The amounts range from $20,000-$25,000 and require a 25 percent match, either as in-kind services or non-federal cash. Projects must be focused on safety education or public awareness initiatives in communities with rail transit systems (commuter rail, light rail and streetcar). OLI-approved materials and OLI logos must be used and all grants must be coordinated through state Operation Lifesaver programs. The deadline for grant proposals is June 30, 2013.

Examples of previously-funded grants include New Jersey Transit's outreach to schools to raise teen driver awareness about safe driving around light-rail trains or buses; a safety campaign in the Atlanta area targeting distracted drivers with bus taillight displays and posters on Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority trains and an Austin, Texas, Capitol Metro community safety blitz in advance of new commuter rail service.

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