By WVUA 23 Web Writer Rebecca Griesbach
Norfolk Southern’s safety train is making a stop in Tuscaloosa Tuesday, Oct. 10.
The safety train is part of the railroad’s Operation Awareness and Response program to strengthen relationships with local first responders. It also provides training on rail operations and potential rail incidents, including incidents involving hazardous materials.
The train’s cars are converted into classrooms and specially equipped flatcars to provide hands-on training, and painted on its engine is an insignia honoring police, fire and emergency services.
In Tuscaloosa, Norfolk Southern expects to train more than 100 firefighters, law officers and emergency medical and emergency management personnel. The company is hosting seven classes through Oct. 12.
“It’s most important to us because we have a lot of railroad crossings and a lot of rail cars that go through our city on a regular basis,” said Tuscaloosa Fire and Rescue Battalion Chief Terry Jacobs. “So it’s a good refresher for those of us who work with hazmat and just for first responders in general.”
Tuscaloosa is one of 23 safety train stops across 14 states in 2017. Each year, Norfolk Southern offers training to about 5,500 first responders.