GDOT, Nor­folk South­ern part­ner­ing to en­hance rail­road cross­ing safety

The Standard Journal - - LOCAL NEWS - Staff re­ports

Ad­di­tional safety sig­nage is com­ing to rail­road cross­ings in Polk County and around the state ac­cord­ing to the Ge­or­gia Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion in a re­lease last week.

GDOT re­ported in their re­lease that some 600 rail­road cross­ings in the state will get yield or stop signs added as they don’t cur­rently have any and need to come into com­pli­ance with the 2009 Man­ual on Uni­form Traf­fic Con­trol De­vices in a part­ner­ship with Nor­folk South­ern.

With 582 af­fected cross­ings in Ge­or­gia, Nor­folk South­ern’s project is by far the largest due to the size and com­plex­ity of its sys­tem in Ge­or­gia. The project seeks to in­stall sig­nage at pas­sive pub­lic high­way-rail grade cross­ings that don’t al­ready have au­to­matic warn­ing de­vices, like lights or gates.

Fund­ing for the statewide project in­cludes money from the USDOT’s Rail­way-High­way Cross­ings Pro­gram, which makes funds avail­able to states for the cost of con­struc­tion of projects for the elim­i­na­tion of haz­ards at rail­way­high­way cross­ings.

“The in­ter­est and in­vest­ment in the safety of the Ge­or­gia’s mo­tor­ing pub­lic by Nor­folk South­ern and the other rail­roads op­er­at­ing in Ge­or­gia is com­mend­able,” said GDOT Com­mis­sioner Rus­sell McMurry. “These part­ner­ships will im­prove safety at pas­sive rail­road cross­ings through­out the state.”

“Our col­lab­o­ra­tion with GDOT al­lows us to move for­ward to en­hance safety at high­way-rail grade cross­ings that are not equipped with ac­tive warn­ing de­vices,” said John Scheib, NS’ ex­ec­u­tive vice pres­i­dent law and ad­min­is­tra­tion and chief le­gal of­fi­cer. “Col­lec­tively it rep­re­sents both the state’s and the rail­road’s deep com­mit­ment to pub­lic safety.”

Other rail­roads with which GDOT is part­ner­ing in­clude Ge­or­gia North­east­ern Rail­road, Ge­or­gia South­ern Rail­way, Ogeechee Rail­road Com­pany and St. Mary’s Rail­way West.

Polk joins a list of coun­ties that will be im­pacted by the changes in­clud­ing Bald­win, Banks, Bibb, Bleck­ley, Burke, Car­roll, Charl­ton, Chatham, Clay­ton, Clinch, Cobb, Cook, Coweta, Crisp, Dade, DeKalb, Dodge, Dooly, Dougherty, Echols, Fayette, Floyd, Ful­ton, Glas­cock, Glynn, Gor­don, Gwin­nett, Hall, Har­al­son, Henry, Hous­ton, Jack­son, Jasper, Jeff Davis, Jef­fer­son, Jenk­ins, John­son, Jones, La­mar, Lau­rens, Lee, Lown­des, Ma­con, Mon­roe, Musco­gee, Pauld­ing, Peach, Put­nam, Richmond, Spald­ing, Sumter, Tal­bot, Tay­lor, Telfair, Tift, Turner, Twiggs, War­ren, Wash­ing­ton, Wayne, Whit­field and Wilkin­son.

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