TEXRail crossing malfunction causes concerns in Colleyville

TEXRail trains move up to speeds of 70 mph. With crossing arm malfunctions reported in Colleyville, residents are encouraged to be cautious around the tracks and rail crossings.

TEXRail trains move up to speeds of 70 mph. With crossing arm malfunctions reported in Colleyville, residents are encouraged to be cautious around the tracks and rail crossings.

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On March 21, the city of Colleyville experienced a safety issue in regard to the TEXRail train, which cuts through the city and is operated by Trinity Metro. Colleyville officials reported March 21 all crossing gates stayed in the upright position while the lights and bells sounded for the train.

This marks the third time this month an issue of this kind has occurred with the TEXRail trains.

Over the March 8-10 weekend, Colleyville residents witnessed crossing arm malfunctions. Then on March 14, the city reported the issue of crossing arms remaining upright when a train passes was still happening.

Colleyville Community Relations Officer Erin Spicer said the intersection where this problem has occurred is at the train tracks near the intersection of Bransford Road and L.D. Lockett Road. She said on March 18 the city met with employees from Trinity Metro in regard to concerns about the crossing arms.

"The Trinity Metro employee responsible for overseeing technology explained that if the crossing gates malfunction, the exit gates are designed to fail-safe in the up position," Spicer said in an email. "This allows a car, if caught in the rail area, the ability to leave the area and avoid collision with a train."

She said following the March 21 incident, the city contacted Trinity Metro immediately, but due to the number of issues the city has experienced, the city is taking extra steps to keep residents safe. These include Colleyville police staying on scene to help direct traffic when gates and signals malfunction, electronic message boards being posted at all rail crossings and social media messages being posted to all of the city's accounts to help keep residents informed.

"We are concerned about the number of malfunctions the technology at these crossings have had and continue to stay in contact with Trinity Metro to ensure issues are resolved in a timely manner, but also to learn how Trinity Metro is working to prevent future issues," Spicer said in the email.

A March 22 statement from Trinity Metro pointed out that an important safety factor is that the entrance gates were lowered, which prevented cars from crossing the tracks.

"Entry gates (also known as entrance gates) stop vehicles from entering the track area," the Trinity Metro statement said. "Exit gates allow vehicles to exit the track area. The critical crossing arms for crossing safety are the entry gates. These have always functioned as intended and have closed when TEXRail trains have approached the crossing."

Following an inspection, Trinity Metro reported that the crossing arms that provide an exit did not drop on March 21. As a result, Trinity Metro has replaced a malfunctioning piece of the exit gates, tested it and placed the crossing back into service.
By Miranda Jaimes

Editor, Frisco & McKinney

Miranda joined Community Impact Newspaper as an editor in August 2017 with the Grapevine/Colleyville/Southlake edition. In 2019 she transitioned to editor for the McKinney edition. She began covering Frisco as well in 2020. Miranda covers local government, transportation, business and nonprofits in these communities. Prior to CI, Miranda served as managing editor for The Prosper Press, The Anna-Melissa Tribune and The Van Alstyne Leader, and before that reported and did design for The Herald Democrat, a daily newspaper in Grayson County. She graduated with a degree in journalism from Oklahoma Christian University in 2014.



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