Operation Lifesaver conducts safety blitz

Published 10:11 pm Friday, August 8, 2008

Richard Wood Park, located in Thorsby, hosted a three-hour railroad blitz yesterday.

Many different safety groups were present at the blitz and worked hard to spend time with each individual who wanted to know more about safety issues.

Operation Lifesaver, the host of the blitz, was represented by Executive Director Nancy Hudson who was highly enthusiastic with the turnout of people interested in railroad and child safety.

“We are here to try and protect the people of this community. It is great to see people out here asking questions and learning ways to keep their family safe,” she said.

The Alabama Department of Transportation has become a partner with Operation Lifesaver in hopes of getting even more information out to the public. Hudson said that with DOT’s help, they have been able to go places they couldn’t before to bring the public information on how to lower their risk of having an accident on the roadways, waterways and other areas of life.

While parents and grandparents were talking to the specialist at the blitz, Operation Lifesaver had special areas of games set up for children to participate in.

“This was something that we wanted everyone to have fun at, and we wouldn’t have been able to do that if the kids wouldn’t have had entertainment as well, so we had prizes set up and the kids were able to play games and win small tokens to take home with them such as suckers and rulers,” Hudson said.

The group has spent most of the week setting up for the blitz event and even had some small volunteers who helped them color posters to advertise. Thorsby residents Dylan Patterson, Emily Patterson and David Strength all gave up time during a family picnic to help Hudson and others color their posters.

“It was amazing to me that the kids would come over and help the way they did. I just couldn’t believe it,” she said.

The people at the blitz were also given the opportunity to meet Aika, a trained police dog with Operation Livesaver. She is a female Sable Shepherd who is trained in patrol work and bomb work. She is partner to Bryan, Schaffer, a senior special agent with BNSF Railway Company Police.