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In Wake of Mounting Deaths on Railroad Tracks BSO and Brightline Launch Operation Crossing Guard

Number Of Deaths In Train Collisions Mounts

The number of deaths caused by collisions with trains in Broward County has been mounting steadily. It has become so frequent that it is almost a weekly occurrence.

Just this week an 84 year old driver turned to head east on NE 62nd St from Dixie Highway. The railroad warning signals activated as she turned and the safety arms started to come down. The driver, for some unknown reason, pulled onto the tracks and stopped.

The Brightline train was too close and despite attempts to warn the driver and stop the train it collided with the car. The car was dragged several hundred feet before the train stopped. The driver, Liesel Hulden of Coconut Creek, was pronounced dead on the scene.

Operation Crossing Guard

As a result of the mounting fatalities along the tracks BSO in partnership with Brightline and other Broward County law enforcement agencies, created “Operation Crossing Guard”.

The goal of the operation is to deter railway fatalities through enforcement.

Operation Crossing Guard’s traffic enforcement action will run from June 6 through June 17. The action will specifically take place at railroad crossings along the Florida East Coast Railway/Brightline corridor in Broward County. The goal is to reduce railway fatalities  by enforcing traffic laws and educating the public about why it is so dangerous to try and beat the train. 

During the period of enforcement law enforcement will patrol railroad crossings and cite drivers who drive around lowered safety arms, stop on railroad tracks or commit other moving violations. Citations will range from $115 to $205.

Law enforcement and Brightline urges pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists to stop, look and listen when near or crossing the railroad tracks. When a train is approaching,  a person should never attempt to go around the lowered safety arms.It is difficult to estimate the speed of the train and it may be traveling faster and closer than  a person might think.

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* is an independent publication, not affiliated with the City of Oakland Park.

Desiree Avila


Désirée Ávila has called Oakland Park her home for over 33 years. In addition to publishing, Désirée has been featured in print publications, locally and abroad. Désirée was an award winning teacher for 10 years and has a doctoral level education in Educational Technology. She is currently a licensed Florida Realtor® and is committed to a high-level of professionalism.

Désirée consistently professionally develops herself and has earned several different professional designations and certifications in real estate including the PSA, e-Pro, AHWD, SRS, ABR, and SFR. She was also awarded the C2EX, Commitment to Excellence award by the National Association for Realtors (NAR). This award is given to Realtors® that distinguish themselves for their commitment to excellence in the real estate industry.

She is esteemed by her real estate colleagues and has consistently received 5 star reviews from her clients. Her philosophy about real estate is that being a Realtor® is a way of teaching and helping people, and in the process a real estate transaction may occur, that is to say her foremost priority is and has always been about helping others.

She is dedicated to her hometown of Oakland Park and works consistently on building and fostering a strong community. She is passionate about photography and loves to read books about history ; the more detail the better! In addition to English, Désirée is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, French and Italian.

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