It’s an idea that has come to the table previously with both the current and prior administrations but never got off the ground.
In the most recent meeting of the Board of Aldermen, the board voted to request that Norfolk Southern and the Federal Railroad Administration do an initial diagnostic study of Corinth’s crossings to determine what would be required to get a quiet zone in the city. No cost to the city is involved with the study.
It is the first step in the quiet zone process. The board’s vote follows a meeting during the prior week of Mayor Tommy Irwin and Alderman Andrew Labas with William Miller, who coordinates the process for Norfolk-Southern.
Quiet zones can be established where crossings meet certain safety requirements. Once the zone is designated, the train crew does not have to blow the train’s horn at the crossings.
The process is expected to take about a year and would not involve the closings of any intersections, Mayor Tommy Irwin said.
Labas said they learned that areas with quiet zones have not experienced an increase in accidents after the zones were implemented.
“They are going to blow that horn anyway if there is something blocking the track,” the mayor said.
Irwin said people who work and live downtown like the idea.
“It would be a nice thing for our community,” he said.
Under the train horn rule, locomotive engineers must begin to sound train horns at least 15 seconds, and no more than 20 seconds, in advance of all public grade crossings, according to the Federal Railroad Administration. If a train is traveling faster than 60 mph, engineers will not sound the horn until it is within a quarter mile of the crossing, even if the advance warning is less than 15 seconds.