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

PUCO approves the upgrade of rail crossings in Fulton, Summit and Richland counties

 

COLUMBUS, OHIO (July 6, 2016) – The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) today approved the installation of mast-mounted flashing lights and roadway gates at crossings in Fulton, Summit and Richland counties.

Norfolk Southern Railway will upgrade the crossing at West Barre Street, in the village of Archbold, Fulton County and Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway Company (WLE) will upgrade the crossing at Southeast Avenue/State Route 532, near Tallmadge, Summit County. These projects are to be completed by April 6, 2017. Federal funding for these projects is provided through the Ohio Rail Development Commission (ORDC).

WLE will upgrade the crossing at Trux Street/State Route 603, in the village of Plymouth, Richland County. This project is to be completed by July 6, 2017. Funding for this project will be shared between the PUCO’s State Grade Crossing Protection Funds, WLE and the ORDC.

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 location. 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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