A Norfolk Southern train blocked the North Defiance Street and Franklin Street railroad crossings for 4 1/2 hours yesterday, Tuesday.
A stopped train creates traffic problems throughout the community, making it difficult for those on the north side to visit businesses on the south, and vice versa. It really ties up the whole town.
Archbold deals with trains passing through every day. Most of the time, the delay caused by a train is relatively short, and motorists can be on their way.
It is when the crossings are blocked for hours at a time that the situation becomes frustrating. Fortunately, having both crossings blocked does not happen frequently.
When it does, Archbold has been blessed with a railroad underpass on Clyde’s Way, about a mile east of downtown. Co. Rd. 24, about a mile west of downtown, is usually open as well.
Many years ago, Archbold leaders recognized the potential danger of trains preventing ambulances and fire trucks based on the south side of the tracks from crossing. A second fire station was constructed on the north side of the tracks to alleviate the danger.
Even with such accommodations, the traffic tie-ups are at best, an inconvenience. At worst, they are a pain in the neck.
We urge those at Norfolk Southern to take whatever steps possible to keep their trains running, so Archbold can keep rolling and stay in business.
And when it becomes obvious the tracks will be blocked for hours, could some “Road Closed At RR Tracks” signs be posted on the north and south ends of town, warning drivers and temporarily rerouting traffic to Clyde’s Way (Co. Rd. 22)? That would go a long way to unsnarling stopped traffic downtown.
No one likes to sit for a train that’s just sitting there, not knowing how long it’s been stopped and how long it will remain stopped.