Family Wants Brownsville Railroad Crossing Warning System Fixed

4 years 4 months 1 day ago Thursday, August 03 2017 Aug 3, 2017 August 03, 2017 5:22 PM August 03, 2017 in News

BROWNSVILLE – A Cameron County man wants the warning system on a railroad crossing near his home fixed after he and his family had a close call.

Resident Cornelio Landin said his family was on their way home when they came up to the railroad crossing on Robindale Road, about half a mile from the intersection with Padre Island Highway.

That’s when his instincts kicked in.

"We stopped and all of a sudden the train just ran, you know, was going down the railroad tracks," he said. "And it was like, 'Oh my God, the lights didn't go down.'" 

The road is a highly trafficked area with apartment complexes and new subdivisions all around, Landin said. He said the lights and barricades need to function properly. Otherwise, people may not be as fortunate as he was. 

"There could be a major accident and if this is not taken care of, until something happens like that, then somebody is going to have to pay with their lives," he told CHANNEL 5 NEWS.

Landin and his wife called 911 to report the issue. He said they also tried calling other entities, like the Brownsville Rio Grande International Railway, to report the problem.

Landin said they have yet to get answers as to what the problem there is.

CHANNEL 5 NEWS looked into who is responsible for maintaining the crossing.

We discovered the crossing is property of Omnitrax. The company bought the railway from BRG several years ago.

We called the company's Denver office to get some answers. The group’s spokeswoman, Julie Slagle, said the company is working on figuring out the issue.

Landin said they travel through the area on a daily basis. He said he wants the issue resolved.

"I hope that this gets the message out to at least come and look at it," he said. "See if something is malfunctioning, and pretty much, fix it."

CHANNEL 5 NEWS will continue tracking this story for a response from Omnitrax.

According to Union Pacific, there are some safety guidelines drivers should follow when driving-up to railroad crossing intersections:

- Drivers must treat a crossbuck as a yield sign at all times

- Trains can't stop quickly, but drivers can

- If the signals are activated, the driver is obligated to be able to stop within a safe distance

- Drivers should never try to beat the train

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