If the idea of taking senior pictures on train tracks is part of the plan, you're going to want to throw that idea out...

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With high school graduation ceremonies on the horizon, senior pictures are starting to be discussed across Acadiana.

If the idea of taking senior pictures on train tracks is part of the plan, you're going to want to throw that idea out.

Is It Illegal To Take Pictures On Railroad Tracks?

My wife saw a post in the Acadiana Moms Group on Facebook from someone looking for a good place with railroad tracks to take Senior pictures.

Everyone started replying telling her it's illegal to take any kind of picture on railroad tracks.

McConnell Adams, Townsquare Media Lansing
McConnell Adams, Townsquare Media Lansing

I did a little research and sure enough, it is indeed against the law.

Why Is It Illegal To Take Pictures On Railroad Tracks?

Aside from being dangerous, I honestly didn't know it was illegal. I asked a few people around the building here, and they didn't know either.

From slrlounge.com -

"Trespassing onto railroad property, including tracks, bridges, buildings, and signal towers, is illegal. Violators are subject to a citation for trespassing. Union Pacific will seek removal from publication any photograph or video that violates this policy."

Trains can approach much faster than people expect. Due to their size and speed, trains also appear to be further away and moving slower than they are.

By the time you realize a train is close, it may be too late to move safely out of the way.

fading tracks

There's also the issue of railroad tracks being private property.

Railroad tracks are typically private property owned by the railroad companies. Walking or taking photos on them without permission is considered trespassing, which is illegal and can lead to arrest or fines.

You could also possibly be electrocuted. Some tracks are electrified, which poses an additional risk of electrocution from overhead wires or a third rail.

Looks like if you need railroad tracks in the background for your Wedding or Senior pictures, Photoshop is the safest and more legal way to go.

Illegal To Take Picture On Railroad Tracks
Unsplah Via Julian Hochgesang

From railroads.dot.gov -

"Railroad tracks have become popular locations to shoot wedding photos, graduation pictures, and selfies.

However, taking pictures on railroad tracks is illegal and highly dangerous. Operation Lifesaver, Inc., one of FRA's partner organizations, warns photographers and social media users of the dangers of this activity. For everyone's safety, keep subjects off the tracks."

The irony of having pictures of railroad tracks in a story about how it's illegal to take pictures of, or on railroad tracks is not lost on us.

We can only assume the photographers of the railroad tracks included in this story had permission to do so.

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