"The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has the authority to exercise jurisdiction over railroad safety matters. Therefore, FRA can exercise its authority to address blocked crossing concerns, to the extent that blocked crossings affect railroad safety. However, the regulation of blocked crossings presents a number of complex issues. For example, a law or regulation limiting the amount of time that a grade crossing may be blocked could have the unintended effect of requiring a railroad to violate other Federal safety requirements (such as air brake testing and other air brake safety requirements). Therefore, when presented with blocked crossing complaints, FRA generally works with the affected communities to identify the cause(s) of the blocked crossing incident, bring the blocked crossing incident to the attention of the railroad, and help communities address their blocked crossing concerns."

Ask the Times appears on Thursdays and Saturdays. You can call 563-333-2632, email ask@qctimes.com or write Ask the Times, Quad-City Times, 500 E. 3rd St., Davenport, IA 52801.

 

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