Truck traffic banned on Fansher in Dawn Euphemia due to dangerous crossing

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Trucks and tractors will be banned on Fansher Road until CP Rail can put up crossing arms at its tracks.

Last week, Transport Canada ordered Canadian Pacific to place a crossing guard at the rail crossing on the remote Dawn-Euphemia Road to make sure large vehicles were safe crossing in the area. It was the latest in a series of actions after a mid-November accident which killed a Newbury man.

CP Rail, Dawn-Euphemia and Transport Canada have been talking about the crossings at Fansher Road, Bilton Line and Euphemia Line since 2013. The rail line comes in at a 40-degree angle to the road, making it difficult for large vehicles with restricted view from the rear window to cross safely.

Last month, 78 year-old Michil DeMaiter was killed trying to cross Euphemia Line. Transport Canada ordered it and Bilton Line closed and Fansher’s traffic monitored by a crossing guard.

That guard was removed after the township placed warning signs along the area. But Transport Canada didn’t think that was enough and ordered CP to either slow its trains to 10 miles per hour in the area or hire the crossing guard again.

But now the township and CP have come up with a solution which has satisfied Transport Canada. At Monday night’s council meeting, Dawn-Euphemia councillors were scheduled to pass a bylaw which bans trucks and tractors from crossing the track at Fansher. In an email to The Independent, Clerk-Administrator Donna Clermont says “the measures taken include restricting the crossing to vehicle and light truck use only, monitor the crossing and educate its users about the risk of restricted visibility.”

The township hand delivered notices of the restriction to homes within eight kilometers of the crossing.

And she says CP has committed to “have an automatic warning system in place by March 31, 2016.”

CP has committed to signalizing at least one of the three crossings at a cost of $350,000. The township wants CP to provide another $175,000 to put up crossing arms at Euphemia Line with the township footing the bill for the rest.

At press time, CP had not responded to the municipality’s request.

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