Community says trains blocking vital road

News

When there is an emergency getting help should be something simple, but for some people in one local community the roadblocks they face are sometimes literal.

People living in one Hinton neighborhood are outraged after train cars block the only way out of their neighborhood. For people in the Willow Wood Road area in Summers County, the Wiggins Crossing sometimes becomes a trap. The people living there said trains are blocking the road, creating what locals are calling a dangerous situation. Joni Koeing lives in the community, and said CSX trains frequently block the crossing for 2 and 3 hours at a time.

According to West Virginia State Law, it’s unlawful for any railroad company to block the passage of any public street, road or highway of the state for longer than ten minutes. You can look at the entire code by clicking www.wvlegislature.gov.

Koenig told 59 News, this has been happening for over two years. She also said there were times residents tried to get to the hospital for treatment, but weren’t able to get across due to the blocked road. Another resident, Kent Bartgis said they have reached out to CSX, but cannot get anything resolved.

“CSX is not being a good neighbor,” Bartgis said. 

Now, they are asking for any help they can get, or a any solution to this problem.

“There’s engines in the center of the train. Set up the first part of your train, pull it past the crossing, set up the rest of it with those middle engines then hook them together and go on. Don’t just keep it blocked for hours at a time, it’s not safe,” Koenig said.

Those living in this community have also reached out to U.S. representatives for help but nothing has been done yet.

CSX representatives tell us they are investigating the issue.

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