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New stop sign at railroad causing headaches

NOW: New stop sign at railroad causing headaches

OSCEOLA, Ind.-- A problem railroad crossing finally gets a stop sign with a goal of alleviating traffic and improving safety.

Neighbors living in the area are fed up, now police are stepping in to make sure folks stop when they see that red sign.

Not one, not two but over a dozen cars sped through the newly installed stop signs on Ash Road in Osceola Tuesday morning.

“I stopped 15 cars within the first hour that I was out here on the first day that I was here," said Brian Hoffman, Indiana State Police Master Trooper.

New stop signs along Ash road were installed just this week in hopes of increasing safety measures at railroad crossings with recent increase in train activity.

“The stop signs have made more congestion," said nearby resident Gary Gamble.

Gamble says the new signs aren’t helping as much as Pioneer Railcorp, the transportation company responsible for the signs, thought they would.

“It’s always a real line up and now its backing up again," said Gamble.

Just about 500 feet down the road, a new roundabout was constructed by the St. Joseph County Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Growth in 2018 to alleviate traffic buildup.

The price tag of the project? 1.3 million dollars completely funded through federal gas tax.

“You time your trips to avoid the congestion if you live here," said Gamble.

What do you get when you have congestion, coupled with drivers who disregard the new signs? Indiana state police say that for now--

“I'm just issuing warnings, letting everyone know that it’s a stop sign now instead of a yield sign,” said Master Trooper Hoffman.

“Well people always drive too fast. Lights in the dark, there are none. Anybody that drives in the area that doesn’t normally drive there just drives as normal and there was no stop there," said Gamble.

ABC 57 reached out to the Pioneer Railcorp for comment but their spokesperson wasn’t available.

Stop signs were also erected at Bitterweet, Cedar Trail, and Apple to improve safety and congestion.

St. Joseph County Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Growth say, “We will defer to their judgement regarding the stop sign installation in the interest of public safety related to train-vehicle interaction.”

 

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