Petri Introduces Bill To Prevent Trains From Blocking Crossings

Congressman Tom Petri has introduced a bill that would do something about federal regulations that led to a Canadian National train blocking a Highway 175 crossing in Byron for five hours. The bill would allow a limited exception to federal hours of service regulations.  It would allow train operators to move a train off a road intersection even if they have reached their federal hours-of-service limits.  It is cosponsored by Wisconsin Reps. Jim Sensenbrenner and Sean Duffy.  “Since first learning about this incident, I realize there are many issues that can cause a train to block an intersection,” Petri said on introducing the bill. While testifying before a House committee this week Petri called the situation that developed at Byron “unbelievable.” During that incident on September 7th the train crew “timed out” or reached their allotted hours limit under a federal requirement. Motorists had to wait while another train crew arrived to move the train. Petri says the situation could have been remedied if the crew had moved the train 50 feet.