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Rail News: Communication and Signal

Arizona city creates quiet zone on UP line


A quiet zone went into effect last week in Chandler, Ariz., along a five-mile stretch of a Union Pacific Railroad line that runs north-south through the heart of the city.

The quiet zone applies to 12 UP grade crossings between Elliot and Germann roads. The zone was established on June 3 after a more than two-year effort by the city, UP, Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), Arizona Department of Transportation and Arizona Corporation Commission to upgrade the crossings.

Federal guidelines regulate the type of infrastructure and safety measures needed at each crossing to implement a quiet zone. The FRA ensured that all necessary safety devices were in place, such as gates, flashing lights, bells and traffic warning signs.

Although locomotive horn use now is restricted 24/7 along the UP segment, trains still are permitted to blow their whistles if an engineer or conductor observes activities that could be a safety concern, such as pedestrians walking near the crossing or a vehicle stopped on the tracks.

A similar quiet zone was established three years ago in Chandler along UP's Tempe line between Ray Road and Chandler Boulevard.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 6/11/2013