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For Immediate Release
Contact:  Matt Schilling
(614) 466 7750

PUCO approves the upgrades of rail crossings in Allen, Ashtabula, Crawford counties

COLUMBUS, OHIO (Mar. 22, 2017) – The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) today approved construction authorization from the Ohio Rail Development Commission (ORDC) directing Chicago, Ft. Wayne, & Eastern Railroad (CFE) and Norfolk Southern Railway Company (NS) to make the following improvements at rail crossings in Allen, Ashtabula and Crawford counties.

CFE will install lights and gates at the N. Rumbaugh Road/Township Road 232 grade crossing in Allen County.

NS will install lights and gates at the Marrian Road/Township Road 183 grade crossing in Ashtabula County, and at the Lemert Road/Township Road 29 grade crossing in Crawford County.

The grade crossing improvement projects are to be completed by Dec. 22, 2017. Federal funding for these projects is provided through the ORDC. The PUCO continues this cooperative process to enhance and promote public safety at rail crossings throughout the state.

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 the 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 123 in 2001 to 72 in 2015.

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 http://gradecrossings.puco.ohio.gov/.

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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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