Concern mounts over Jemison crossings

Published 12:24 pm Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Jemison city officials are growing more concerned about the safety of railroad crossings, some of which are plagued by potholes.

Most notable is the Church Street crossing, also known as Alabama Highway 191, where the pavement is crumbling at the point where the road meets the tracks.

Because the damage cannot be repaired without prior consent from railroad company CSX – and any repairs must be done in the presence of an inspector – the situation has gone untouched for several months.

“This is getting ridiculous,” City Council member Danny Robinson said last night during a council meeting. “It’s going to tear the front end out from under all the automobiles.”

The Church Street crossing has undergone inspections by both CSX and the state Department of Transportation. Mayor Eddie Reed said he is still in contact with CSX about the problem.

“Something has to be done,” Reed said.

Robinson also mentioned the Union Grove Road crossing and expressed concerns about school traffic having to use the crossings in coming months.

In other business, the council voted to use $2,000 in Homeland Security grant money toward purchasing additional security cameras for City Park. This move stemmed from concerns over recent vandalism near the park’s entrance.

Council member Sam Reed said he is hoping grant money will come through for the purchase of playground equipment.

The council also:

voted to purchase a license for a public safety radio repeater, at an estimated cost of about $600

approved the hiring of three reserve police officers

named the street that runs from Highway 191 behind City Hall, which shall henceforth be known as Phyllis Street

named the street that intersects with 191 beside Holly Grove Church, which shall henceforth be known as Melrose Place