A survey is being circulated in Chase asking the public if they would support the installation of a controlled railway crossing at Aylmer Road. (Google Maps Image)

Chase seeks public input on silencing train whistles

Trains currently sound their whistles on the approach to both crossings in the village

A survey is being circulated in Chase asking the public their opinions on noise created by train whistles as they pass through the village.

Chase council wants to gauge how bothered the public is by trains sounding warning whistles as they approach the village’s two railway crossings.

Currently, the Pine Street crossing is controlled with a gate while the Aylmer Road crossing has only flashing warning lights.

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Respondents are asked if the train whistles affect them at both the Aylmer Road and Pine Street Railway crossings, or only at one of them.

The survey notes there is no crossing gate at the Aylmer Road crossing so it does not qualify for cessation of the whistle use. It asks if people would be in favour of the village spending approximately $25,000 to install a gate so whistle use could be stopped at the crossing.

It also asks if residents would be in favour of the village council applying to silence train whistles at the controlled Pine street Crossing.

According to Transport Canada, the Canadian Rail Operating Rules require all trains to sound their whistle whenever they approach a public railway crossing. Municipalities can apply to stop the whistling if the noise is bothering residents nearby.

Transport Canada procedure states that once the municipality receives a request from residents to cease the whistling, the municipality and railway can look into the issue to see if stopping the whistling will still preserve safety. Factors considered include the line of sight in each direction down the railroad tracks, adequate room to stop for vehicles approaching the crossing and the warning and safety equipment the crossing is fitted with.

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If the municipality and railway can agree that the crossing meets the safety requirements for stopping whistle blowing, the municipality can then pass a resolution requesting that the whistling be stopped. A Transport Canada Rail Safety Inspector may order that train whistling start again if safety conditions are not being met.

The survey can be found on the Village of Chase website.


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