“When these injuries happen they’re pretty bad and pretty gruesome,” said Powell.
On Wednesday, three teens were caught playing “chicken” with a 6,000 ton Indiana Railroad Train in Johnson County. The train was moving at more than 40 miles per hour and the teens were jumping out of the way at the last second.
And in Hendricks County, there have been reports of teens playing a game called “breezing” where they stand so close to a fast moving train that they can feel it “breeze” by.
“I think a lot of teenagers feel like they are invincible,” said Powell. “But they don’t realize that if you’re going to fall off a train or get hit by a train, two things are going to happen: either you’re going to die or you’re going to have a catastrophic injury such as losing a limb that’s going to change your life forever.”
And it isn’t just the kids and their families who are impacted by the consequences; they also leave a lasting impact on train crews.
“When these incidents happen, it’s really hard for the crews of the railroad because they have to respond to these scenes that are horrific,” said Powell.
In 2016, 20 people died in trespassing accidents on Indiana railroad tracks. Dozens of others were charged with trespassing before they could get hurt.
In Indiana, all railroad properties are considered private and anyone caught playing on them can be charged and face time in jail.