Norfolk & Southern Cited for Blocking Railroad Tracks

railroad-crossingElkhart-based Norfolk & Southern Railroad was cited for blocking State Road 17 in Burr Oak for an extended period of time Sunday morning. A Marshall County Sheriff’s deputy responded to a complaint around 9:30 a.m. and observed the train not moving for more than 10 minutes. He then drove to the Redwood Crossing area and spoke to the conductor, who said they were waiting for a long train from the Fort Wayne area to pass. It’s the latest in a series of problems at that crossing. On Oct. 30 a verbal warning was given, and the conductor was told citations would be issued for future occurrences.

State Road 17 is the main roadway through the area and provides critical access for first responders, firefighters, police departments and ambulances. On Oct. 29 the roadway was allegedly blocked by the train for more than three hours. Authorities also got a report of a train stopped on the tracks for an extended time period on Oct. 10.

Marshall County Commissioner Kevin Overmyer commended the sheriff’s department for enforcing the law. He stated in today’s Marshall County Commissioners meeting the trains block the roadway for up to six hours at a time, and it inhibits the safety of citizens. Overmyer added the 911 center is not notified of the closure, and it affects the safety of Marshall County residents.

Click here to view the law pertaining to blocking railroad grade crossings.