Three trains. Two days. Zero movement.
Between May 15 and May 17, trains were blocking the railroad crossings at Third Street and Rawson Drive, causing delays and traffic congestion.
And Rosenberg City Council member Isaac Davila wanted to do something about it. Which is why he brought this issue to the council’s workshop meeting this month.
“Right, so, in case people didn’t hear, we had two crossings that were blocked for three days,” Davila explained.
“I wanted to bring it up and (Police Chief Jonathan White) sent us communication (with the railroad).
“Pretty much, they admitted they had an inexperienced crew and promised not to do it again. Is that what it was?”
White said Kansas City Southern Rail owned the locomotives in question.
“The crew for Kansas City Southern did not update their dispatch center or their internal controls that they were going to be shutting the train down so they could go on their resting hours,” White told council.
“And it wasn’t until late Monday night that they determined it was a Kansas City Southern train. They dispatched a crew out that removed that train Tuesday morning.
“Miscommunication across the board. KCS took accountability. They’re sorry for the event and they’ve assured us that it shouldn’t happen again.”
According to city staff, this problem couldn’t have been solved by Rosenberg authorities.
Prior to June 2005, the Transportation Code enabled local jurisdictions to issue citations to the railroad company if its train blocked a railroad crossing for more than 10 minutes. But on June 17, 2005, the Texas attorney general removed changed that.
“I put this on here so we could kind of address it and people know that we take it serious,” Davila said. “They can pretty much store trains when they want to there, but they should at least split them up where they’re not blocking the crossings.”
White said that the police department would work in conjunction with the railroad companies to stop something like this from happening again.
“They admitted they messed up,” council member Tim Krugh said. “They didn’t follow procedures. At all. I know what that’s like. Been there.
“I think we’re OK. Lessons learned on this whole thing on both sides. I think we’ll be fine.”