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Quiet zone needed on Ford Ave.

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POSTED: April 22, 2013 12:53 p.m.

Editor, More than 30 times a day, the sound level from the multiple horn blasts of an approaching locomotive at Georgia 144 creates a significant noise that depreciates the quality of life in Richmond Hill.  
The sounding of train horns at crossings is regulated by federal rules from the Federal Railway Authority. The same 2005 FRA rules that govern the blowing of horns also establishes a process by which local governments can establish “quiet zones,” which remove the requirement for train operators to routinely sound their horn at all crossings.
Establishing a quiet z one usually requires improvements to crossings, such as: enhanced warning circuitry, special types of gates, extended medians and other supplemental safety measures. Because of the existing warning-signal crossing lights, bells and gates and the median along Ford Avenue, it appears much of the costly improvements required to establish a quiet zone likely already are in place.  
Ford Avenue is a state highway, so the city and state would need to work together to establish a quiet zone in Richmond Hill.
It is time for the Richmond Hill City Council to establish a task force to explore a quite zone for our community.

— J. Robert Mobley, Richmond Hill

 

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