Submitted for use on Sept. 26, 2019
Word Count: 384
By State Sen. Blake Doriot (R-Syracuse)
Last year, a tragic accident occurred when a truck hit a school bus at a railroad crossing near Argos on U.S. 31, which took the life of Owen Abbott, a student on board.
Recently, on Monday, Sept. 23, another accident took place at this railroad crossing when a northbound tanker that was stopped for a train was hit from behind by a car, seriously injuring the car's driver.
To increase the safety of the Argos railroad crossing, I urged the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) to make some current safety improvements to this crossing.
I am pleased to say that after working with INDOT, crews will begin to install rumble strips and additional signage to this railroad crossing on U.S. 31 as soon as Tuesday of next week. The addition of rumble strips and additional signage will resemble the improvements recently completed at the Tipton railroad crossing.
This will increase safety for motorists until INDOT’s major construction project planned for approximately 2023 or 2024, which will create an overpass bridge for drivers over the Argos rail road crossing.
To increase school bus safety in Indiana, my fellow lawmakers and I also passed Senate Enrolled Act 2 during the 2019 legislative session, which I co-authored. This new law:
Additionally, I authored Senate Bill 42, which would have required INDOT to construct, in locations where practical, lanes and signs at railroad crossings on state highways that can help improve safety.
Another railroad safety bill introduced to the General Assembly was House Bill 1090, which aimed at improving railroad crossing safety by requiring a railroad corporation to inform the local law enforcement authority of a blocked railroad-highway grade crossing in certain instances.
Ensuring the safety of all Hoosiers is a top priority for me, and I will continue to work with INDOT to improve our railroad crossings in Indiana and advocate for legislation that ensures motorists are traveling on safe roads.
As always, feel free to contact me directly with your questions or concerns at Senator.Doriot@iga.in.gov or by phone at 800-382-9467.
For a high-resolution photo of Doriot, click here.