Power needed for railroad crossing
Due to the rural location of the crossing, no direct power supply is available and there are limitations on the alternatives being investigated such as solar and battery operated, she said.
The California Public Utilities Commission is working with the Lassen County Public Works Department and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway to determine the scope of work and the feasibility of the project.
The CPUC will determine the projects it will fund for the next two fiscal years later this year. At that time it will review the crossing arms project on A-21 based on the actual cost estimates. Each year $16 million is allocated for the entire state of California, limiting funds available for any particular project.
Lassen County Supervisor Bob Pyle initiated the efforts to improve the safety of the train track intersection on A-21 the summer of 2004. Several of Pyle’s constituents approached him following an accident at the crossing Wednesday, May 26, that took the lives of two Westwood teens, Daniel Lawrence and Ashley Flores.
At a meeting of the board of supervisors in June 2004, Pyle asked for the support of his colleagues in his efforts to improve safety. He read from a letter he wrote to Bree Arnett, an engineer with the CPUC, in which he identified measures that would make the crossing safer. These included additional flashing lights to alert motorists of an approaching train, the installation of safety barriers and the removal of trees along the roadway that block a driver’s vision.
In August of 2004 Larry Millar, director of Public Works for Lassen County, met with two representatives from BSNF to discuss safety measures. At that time crossing arms and additional flashing lights were discussed. However power was determined to be an issue.
The feasibility of generating additional power at the railroad crossing on A-21 should be determined later this year. In an e-mail dated July 28, Carothers wrote: “It is currently anticipated that, provided all outstanding issues are resolved, the project would be funded in federal fiscal year 2008-2009.”
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