Railroad News

“Big Ten” States Start Calling Shots On Grade Crossing Safety Plans In August

(Washington, D.C., June 29. 2010) Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Ohio and Texas €“ the states with the most grade crossing accidents, on average, over the years 2006, 2007 and 2008, have until August 27, 2011 to develop and implement their own (apart from the national) grade crossing safety plans which will then cover the next five years. The ruling was handed down by the USDOT’s Federal Railroad Administration following a February 22, 2010 public hearing in Washington, after the U. S. Congress had ordered the FRA to more effectively deal with the problems of public safety with regard to railroads where the statistics were the most extreme. According to the rule, “A five year period is appropriate because many of the remedial actions that may be included in these plans (e.g., closures and grade separations) may take up to five years to implement. In addition, any identified state that has already developed an action plan in conjunction with a recommendation from DOT’s Office of Inspector General must ensure compliance with this final rule and must resubmit the plan as required.”