Eighteen railroad crossings in the area are slated for safety improvements as part of the Illinois Commerce Commission’s Crossing Safety Improvement Program for Fiscal Years 2017-2021.
State Senator Dale Righter, who represents the local 55th district, says the projects include automatic flashing light signals and gates, reconstructing approaches, or installing concrete slabs in Clark, Coles, Crawford, Effingham, Jasper, Lawrence, Wabash, Wayne, or White counties.
“My district is a major rail corridor with dozens of freight trains and passenger trains operating on a daily basis,” said Righter (R-Mattoon). “With so many trains, it’s imperative we are constantly improving our crossings and ensuring safety is a top priority. These improvements will go far in warning people about oncoming trains, which could ultimately save lives.”
According to the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC), they order safety improvements at public highway-rail crossings with the cost of such improvements paid by the state, the railroads, and local governments. On state roads, the Illinois Department of Transportation pays the majority of the costs through the State Road Fund. For local roads, the Grade Crossing Protection Fund was created to pay the majority of the costs of improvements.
In Effingham County the improvements will be made at rail road crossings in Dieterich and Teutopolis.
The Illinois Commerce Commission provided this list of the improvements that are scheduled: