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September 2014


Train horns no more in Oconomowoc


According to information released by Public Works Director Mark Frye Wednesday, at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 1 a new, quieter era will begin for the City of Oconomowoc.
"On this date, the 27 or so trains per day passing though our community will be silent as they make their way to the east or west," Frye said.
The establishment of a Quiet Zone will take effect on this date and the trains will no longer sound their horns as they approach and go through any of the seven crossing.
"As everyone knows, because of the short distance between the crossings there are times when the horns sound like one long blast from one end of the city to the other," Frye said.
To qualify for a quiet zone, the city provided information to the Federal Railroad Administration that if the train horns were silenced the total risk index number for the city would decrease with the installation of delineators at the crossings. During this year’s street maintenance project, delineators were installed at each of the crossings in preparation of approval for a quiet zone. In addition to the delineators, the one side of the Main Street crossing was rebuilt to accommodate a different gate configuration that could be used in the future.
The best safety feature for pedestrians and drivers at a railroad crossing is common sense, said Frye. Do not enter the crossing if the gates are down and/or the red lights are flashing. Take the time to stop, look and listen prior to crossing the tracks. Should the operator of the train see a safety concern they can use their horns as a warning signal.

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