People take photos at these Michigan locations all the time but probably don't realize they are breaking the law by doing so. Not only is it against the law to take photos at these locations, but it's also extremely dangerous.

Whether you want to take selfies, senior pics, band photos, or you're a photographer simply wanting to capture a moment, taking photos on or near any set of railroad tracks is dangerous. Regardless of the reason or the fact that it's dangerous, at the end of the day, it's downright illegal.

Yes, you take photos of railroads from a distance as long as you're not trespassing but you can't photos while on the the tracks themselves or the private property surrounding them.

Why Is It Illegal to Take Photos on Railroad Tracks?

Taking photos on railroad tracks is illegal for several key reasons:

  1. Trespassing: Railroad tracks and the land immediately surrounding them are private property owned by the railroad companies.
  2. Safety Concerns: Railroad tracks are active and trains can approach quickly and quietly. Taking photos on tracks can lead to severe injury or death.
  3. Federal Regulations: The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and other regulatory bodies have strict rules against trespassing on railroad property.
  4. Liability Issues: Railroad companies can be held liable for accidents that occur on their property.

See Also: Why Green Porch Lights Are Becoming Popular in Michigan

According to, the Railroad Code of 1993 in Michigan states that you could end up serving up to 30 days in jail and/or a $100 fine for violations.

"62.273 Walking, riding, driving, or being upon or along right-of-way or yard; permission required; “right-of-way” defined; being upon, entering, or damaging buildings, rolling stock, or equipment; applicability of section; violation as misdemeanor; penalty."

You may want to think twice about sharing your kid's railroad senior pics on social media.

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