PUCO approves upgrade of rail crossing in Medina and Stark counties
COLUMBUS, OHIO (May 15, 2019) – The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) today approved construction authorization from the Ohio Rail Development Commission (ORDC) directing Wheeling & Lake Erie Railroad (WLE) and Norfolk Sothern Railway (NS) to make the following upgrades and installations at rail crossings in Medina and Stark counties.
WLE is to install lights and gates at the Old Mill Road grade crossing in Spencer Township, Medina County.
NS is to install upgraded LED lights, new gate mechanisms, and two bells at the Market Street grade crossing in the city of Canton, Stark County.
WLE and NS are directed to complete their work by Feb. 15, 2020.
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 356 in 1990 to 66 in 2018.
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/.
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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