Funding Available for Community-Owned Railroad Safety Initiatives

August 5, 2014, Omaha, Nebraska – Union Pacific Railroad is now accepting applications for its UP CARES safety grant program, which provides funding for community-owned railroad safety initiatives. The grant program is one way the company works collaboratively with communities to encourage safe behavior around railroad tracks.

Organizations applying for grants are encouraged to develop multifaceted plans that include one-to-one outreach to their communities. Grant-funded initiatives may include, but are not limited to:

  • School safety days
  • Community safety programs
  • Grade crossing education efforts
  • Law enforcement activities

“By encouraging communities to be active participants in railroad safety, we can help drivers and pedestrians understand how to behave safely near railroad tracks and keep our communities safe,” said Cameron Scott, Union Pacific executive vice president-Operations.

The online grant application, available at, provides organizations the opportunity to explain how they plan to use grant funding, the safety initiative’s goals, who the initiative will reach and how success will be measured. Union Pacific will be accepting applications Aug. 1 through Sept. 30, after which applications will undergo a review process.

The grant program is part of the UP CARES public safety initiative that promotes pedestrian and driver safety through a variety of outreach channels: 

  • Grade crossing education and enforcement, during which motorists violating rail crossing signage and laws are educated about the dangers of such actions. Related “positive enforcement” initiatives reward drivers who operate safely at grade crossings.
  • Safety trains, hosting local law enforcement, media and public officials and providing them the opportunity to ride in the locomotive cab and see traffic violations from a locomotive engineer’s point of view. This also allows Union Pacific to connect with community leaders and help them better understand the railroad’s safety focus.
  • Communication blitzes, which educate the public via community events, media outreach and paid advertising. Media outreach coincides with safety trains in UP communities. In its inaugural year in 2013, Union Pacific’s safety grant program funded 21 community-owned safety initiatives across the United States.

For more information, including the online application and an educational video about the grant program, visit

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