Highway / Railroad Signals Synched for Safety
U.S. 33/ Pickerington Road Traffic Signals & Grade Crossing Lights & Gates Work Together
Columbus (Tuesday, June 21, 2011) – A busy Fairfield County highway intersection, that also includes a railroad grade crossing literally yards away, now has better-coordinated safety signals to keep traffic from getting jammed up and causing a potential safety hazard when a train rolls through.
In a cooperative effort between the Ohio Rail Development Commission, Ohio Department of Transportation and the Indiana & Ohio Railroad, new grade crossing signals at the Pickerington Road grade crossing are now synchronized with the four-way traffic signals where Pickerington Road and U.S. Highway 33 intersect. The project was completed and tested on June 17th and includes new lights and gates at the grade crossing and “signal preemption” technology that links the activation of the lights and gates with the traffic signals for the nearby highway intersection.
“The new warning devices for the I&O Railroad highway-rail grade crossing are interconnected with the highway traffic signal to interrupt the normal sequence of the traffic signal in order to clear vehicular traffic from the crossing area before train arrival at the crossing”, says ORDC Safety Section Director Susan Kirkland.
Kirkland also points out that the safety improvements are important not just to traffic flow, but also because of the project’s proximity to the nearby Zeller Soccer Park and residential areas that generate vehicular traffic. Additionally, the rail line itself could possibly see more trains in the future as rail traffic picks up due to new business and developments at and near Lancaster and Logan that will ship by rail.
Crews from ODOT and the Indiana & Ohio Railroad (RailAmerica) tested the new system on June 17th by running a pair of locomotives back and forth through the crossing to activate the new system and pronounced it a success.
For more information contact:
Stu Nicholson, ORDC Communications,
at 614-644-0513 or