New stop signs create headaches in Osceola

Published: Dec. 4, 2019 at 7:07 PM EST
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In Osceola, new stop signs making an appearance along a rarely used set of tracks are causing headaches for drivers.

Some who live near the tracks say these new stop signs serve no purpose and are actually dangerous.

"I feel that this is a bit too much," said Charlene Mabie, who lives by the tracks near Ash Road and Liberty Drive.

The company who owns the tracks, Pioneer Railcorp, told 16 News Now that the decision to put the stop signs up comes from a collaboration with the Federal Railroad Administration and the county.

Pioneer says it’s the county who has the final say on the signs going up.

"They put a roundabout to speed traffic through here and they put a stop sign a block away, so I think it's kind of a ridiculous move,” Mabie said.

"I don't see the use in having a sign there, and when people are going to work and getting off from work, the lines back up from the light on 20 up to the turnaround, and it’s just going to back it up more,” said Steven Green, whose home abuts the tracks.

There are new stop signs on Apple Road as well, and neighbors say the signs went up within the past few days.

Many drivers not paying attention to the signs, blowing right through -- a phenomenon you can see in the video above.

"Nobody knows they're there, so everybody is trying to blow through them, and those that do stop are in danger of being rear-ended, and it’s holding up traffic quite a bit," Mabie said.

It all culminates in dangerous conditions for workers near the tracks.

"Countless cars keep coming by, they just fly through, not even paying no attention. I come pulling out of there to trim these trees here, I almost get hit by two or three different cars. They don't care about them, they don't see them, they might not even know they're there," Kyle Krajecki said.

Another new signs says "Caution Increased Railroad Traffic," which could be the reason for the stop signs.

Some people are wondering why a crossing gate wasn't put up instead of stop signs. Pioneer, which owns the Elkhart and Western Railway tracks, says it comes down to assessed need in terms of traffic in the area and, most importantly, cost. Those gates cost around $45,000.

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