PUCO approves rail crossing upgrade
COLUMBUS, OHIO (June 3, 2020) – The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) today approved construction authorization from the Ohio Rail Development Commission (ORDC) directing Northern Ohio & Western Railroad (NOWR), CSX Transportation (CSX) and Wheeling & Lake Erie Railroad (WLE) to make upgrades at rail crossings in Butler, Hancock, Huron, Medina, Sandusky, Washington and Wayne counties.
NOWR will install lights and gates at six grade crossings in the village of Gibsonsburg, Sandusky County, by December 3, 2021.
- State Route 300/ S. Main Street
- W. Stevenson Street
- State Route 600/W. Madison Street
- W. Yeasting Street
- W. Kemmerling Street
- Stone Street
Funds for these projects will be provided by the Ohio Rail Development Commission, the PUCO and the Sandusky County-Seneca-County-City of Tiffin Port Authority.
CSX will make the following upgrades:
- Install lights and gates at the Barnhouse Road/Township Road 114 grade crossing in Allen Township, Hancock County by March 3, 2021.
- Install lights and gates at the Farson Street grade crossing in the city of Belpre, Washington County, by March 3, 2021.
- Install flashing lights and gates at the Baker Road/Township Road 25 grade crossing in Jackson Township, Hancock County, by March 3, 2021.
- Install flashing lights and gates at the Stephenson Road grade crossing in Reily Township, Butler County, by March 3, 2021.
WLE will make the following upgrades:
- Install active warning devices, additional surface and a sidewalk for pedestrians at the State Route 99/Ridge Street grade crossing in the village of Monroeville, Huron County, by March 3, 2021.
- Install flashing lights and gates at the River Corners Road/County Road 27 grade crossing in Medina County by March 3, 2021.
- Install flashing lights and gates at the Bair Road/Township Road 448 grade crossing in Sugarcreek Township, Wayne County, by June 3, 2021.
Federal funding will be provided for these projects.
To increase public safety during the construction of the projects, local governments may seek funding from the PUCO for the cost of safety improvements such as rumble strips, illumination, improved signage or other enhancements at project locations. Funding for such improvements comes from the State Grade Crossing Safety fund and may not exceed $5,000 per project.
The PUCO is responsible for evaluating Ohio’s public grade crossings to determine the need for installing active warning devices. Since the PUCO began implementing these evaluations, the annual number of train-motor vehicle crashes in Ohio has decreased significantly, from 356 in 1990 to 69 in 2019.
The Ohio Rail Hotline, at (866) 814-RAIL (7245), provides Ohioans with a toll-free resource for all railroad crossing questions. For more information regarding these crossings, access the Ohio railroad information system website at gradecrossings.puco.ohio.gov/.
The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) is the sole agency charged with regulating public utility service. The role of the PUCO is to assure all residential, business and industrial consumers have access to adequate, safe and reliable utility services at fair prices while facilitating an environment that provides competitive choices. Consumers with utility-related questions or concerns can call the PUCO Call Center at (800) 686-PUCO (7826) and speak with a representative.
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