Pedestrian Rail Safety Tips

Taking Pictures/Videos of Trains or Structures

Safety is of paramount importance to Union Pacific Railroad. Taking pictures or video while on Union Pacific property is dangerous, so when taking pictures or video of Union Pacific Railroad trains or structures:

  • Stay off Union Pacific Railroad property. This includes tracks, bridges, buildings and signal towers.
  • At passenger stations, Amtrak and Union Pacific's commuter partner guidelines must be followed.
  • Obey all safety rules, regulations and instructions provided by law enforcement and Union Pacific employees.

Violators are subject to a citation for trespassing on railroad property.

Union Pacific will seek removal from publication any photograph or video that violates this policy.

Read more about taking photos safely.

Whether you walk, bike, hunt or stop to take photos, remember rail lines are busy highways used by trains that can take more than a mile to stop. Always expect a train, and use the following tips to stay safe near railroad tracks.

  • Only cross at designated crossings, located where streets intersect with railroad tracks. You’ll know you’re at the right place if you see warning signs or signals.
  • Look both ways when approaching railroad crossings, and stop for trains.
  • Keep a safe distance between you and the tracks when trains approach. Trains are three feet wider than the rails, so wait behindthe warning signs or signals.
  • Never walk between the rails or areas that are not designated railroad crossings, it is dangerous and illegal. While the public can cross the tracks at railroad crossings, rail lines and yards are private property.
  • Avoid distractions including loud music, texting and talking on cell phones. Look up and listen for train horns.
  • Look twice at crossings with multiple tracks. Two tracks may mean two trains, so make sure all tracks are clear before crossing each rail line.

Unmanned Aircraft Systems (Drone) Policy

Unmanned aircraft systems (or "drones") flown for commercial or recreational purposes must adhere to the following:

  • Union Pacific operates in a safety-sensitive environment. Never operate a drone in a manner that could distract or otherwise endanger yourself, Union Pacific employees, equipment or the public.
  • All drone pilots must operate in compliance with applicable Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations and safety guidelines. Flying a drone or other small unmanned aerial vehicle without complying with Federal Aviation Regulations, whether for hobby or commercial purposes, could result in civil fines or criminal action. For further information, refer to the FAA Drone Zone, as well as applicable state and local laws and regulations.
  • Drones may not take off from or land on Union Pacific property unless the pilot is authorized to do so in writing by a specific agreement with Union Pacific.