THE magazine of railroading

SEARCH TRAINSMAG.COM

Enter keywords or a search phrase below:

CSX trains: Ohio Locked

3418 views
35 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 408 posts
CSX trains: Ohio
Posted by NKP guy on Saturday, February 25, 2012 9:17 AM

Our local newspaper has a "bellyache" column in which a man has made comments about CSX horns driving him crazy.  Yesterday he claimed that the traffic "has at least quadrupled" in the 15 years he's been living there.  The line in question is near Ravenna, Ohio (east of Akron).

Does anyone here have any statistics or numbers that I can use to refute such a preposterous claim?  I live two blocks from the same line and I know that's not a correct number.  Who can estimate or tell me the actual number of freights on that line in 1987 and 2012?  

Many thanks.

  • Member since
    December, 2007
  • From: Southeast Michigan
  • 1,163 posts
Posted by Norm48327 on Saturday, February 25, 2012 10:06 AM

I live close to a busy airport in Michigan and hear the same complaints from those who have purchased property nearby. A lot has been done over the years to quiet the jets. Can't say the same for train horns considering they need to be heard over today's automotive stereo systems that are driving our young toward deafness.

Moral: If you can't stand the noise don't buy a house close to a crossing. OTOH, if you live in town you could petition for a quiet zone, but it will have to come from the city coffers and will be reflected in your property tax.

Sorry, I have no statistics to offer.

Norm

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.

  • Member since
    September, 2007
  • From: Georgetown, Texas
  • 2,740 posts
Posted by Sam1 on Saturday, February 25, 2012 10:07 AM

NKP guy

Our local newspaper has a "bellyache" column in which a man has made comments about CSX horns driving him crazy.  Yesterday he claimed that the traffic "has at least quadrupled" in the 15 years he's been living there.  The line in question is near Ravenna, Ohio (east of Akron).

Does anyone here have any statistics or numbers that I can use to refute such a preposterous claim?  I live two blocks from the same line and I know that's not a correct number.  Who can estimate or tell me the actual number of freights on that line in 1987 and 2012?  

Many thanks. 

Try the CSX public relations office.  Give them a call or write them a letter. Tell them that you want to refute a claim in your local blather-sheet. I have sought information this way and have been successful.  

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: Burbank IL (near Clearing)
  • 8,102 posts
Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Saturday, February 25, 2012 10:12 AM

This is pretty much the same issue being raised by several suburbs in the Chicago area, especially Barrington and Frankfort, about the increase in traffic on the former EJ&E since it was absorbed by CN.  In fairness, though, traffic on the EJ&E was pretty light prior to the merger.

Paul The commute to work may be part of the daily grind, but I get two train rides a day out of it.
  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 6,811 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Saturday, February 25, 2012 2:03 PM

I don't have the statistics or actual numbers to back up what I am about to say.

I worked the B&O Operator's position at Ravenna (as well as all the Akron Divisions operator positions) in the late 60's.  During that time the normal volume of trains was 20-30 B&O freights per 8 hour shift, there were 3 passenger schedules in each direction throughout the day and there were additionally 1 or 2 PRR freights that utilized trackage rights between Niles Jct, OH and Ravenna.

The traffic that CSX is currently operating through Ravenna is down from the levels that were being operated prior to the current recession and are on the order of about 15 trains per 8 hour shift, there are no passenger movements as the Washington-Chicago Amtrak route operates on NS West of Pittsburgh.  There are no longer any trackage rights movements between Niles Jct. and Ravenna.  My job responsibilities are not on the Great Lakes Division, however, my responsibilities adjoin the Great Lakes at New Castle.

Sometimes forgotten is the former PRR line through Ravenna.  That line was part of the line from Cleveland to Alliance if I remember correctly.  NS got this trackage in the CR split.  What NS's operating volumes through Ravenna are - I have no idea; either historically or at present.

NKP guy

Our local newspaper has a "bellyache" column in which a man has made comments about CSX horns driving him crazy.  Yesterday he claimed that the traffic "has at least quadrupled" in the 15 years he's been living there.  The line in question is near Ravenna, Ohio (east of Akron).

Does anyone here have any statistics or numbers that I can use to refute such a preposterous claim?  I live two blocks from the same line and I know that's not a correct number.  Who can estimate or tell me the actual number of freights on that line in 1987 and 2012?  

Many thanks.

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    June, 2003
  • From: South Central,Ks
  • 4,651 posts
Posted by samfp1943 on Saturday, February 25, 2012 5:18 PM

Just a thought, on your noise problem. 

    You ought to have your 'Bellyacher' look into a no-horn zone for your community. The shear costs will numb him down, and  a campaign for no-horn zone will make local politicians apoplectic. 

    Sounds like someone trying to drum up local news stories.  This same personality type is seeded throughout the country. Folks like those out in California, that buy homes built next to wind farms, and then complain about the noise of the blades.  

   I live near a double tracked main line with a bi-directional flow  that is some where north of about 50 a day.  The only time you notice then is when outside or on the first night sleeping with the windows open. After a couple go by the sound is a comfort rather than a disturbance. My 2 Cents

  Tell your 'bellyacher' to go find a real problem to worry about.Crying

Sam

 

 


 

  • Member since
    April, 2003
  • From: Defiance Ohio
  • 10,100 posts
Posted by JoeKoh on Saturday, February 25, 2012 9:40 PM

I wonder if ns uses that connection to get to pittsburgh ? there could be more stack trains through there on csx once the tunnel clearances get done.I also know they have replacing the cpl's as well.

stay safe

joe

Deshler Ohio-crossroads of the B&O Matt wants your fries.YUM! Clinton st viaduct undefeated against too tall trucks!!!(pending retirement as champion in 2014!!)

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • 408 posts
Posted by NKP guy on Sunday, February 26, 2012 12:57 PM

BaltACD,

   Thanks for your valuable recollections.  I'll be using your information in my reply.  At the same time, I have emailed CSX as per another suggestion here.  I'll see what they say, too.

   I always appreciate being able to get the straight stuff here from fellow rail fans.

 

 

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 9 posts
Posted by Theycallmesunny on Saturday, March 17, 2012 7:55 PM

Hi there,

I came across this forum while searching the Internet to see if anyone else has a problem with the excessive train noise in Ravenna, OH area. 

Long story short, my husband and I relocated from MI, and not knowing this area at all, we found a house in Rootstown, but never noticed the tracks, and were never told it was so close. Never heard a train during the times we viewed the home, or when the home inspection was done...but our first night here, we couldn't believe it! I am not exaggerating when I say it is train, after train, after train. The horns seem like they constantly blow, and sometimes it sounds as if multiple trains are honking their horns at the same time. We can't even sleep with our windows open because of the noise, and it frequently wakes out baby, and keeps us up at night. 

I met another couple who just bought a house last month across the street, and she said the train noise is unreal! She said it's like every 5-10 min there is a train. If I had to guess how many trains go through here nightly it would be in excess of 30-40 easily. And it seems the traffic begins at night, which is horrible because just about the time you are getting ready to wind down, the train horns start full force. As I'm writing this in about 20 min I have hear 4 trains already. 

I contacted local folks in Rootstown who pointed me to the FRA, and I spoke with a very nice lady who said she would make sure they are blowing the horns per regulations, but I wanted to know what can be done to stop this noise...at least at night, and I was told the mayor would have to petition this, but that areas close by have quiet zones. That's what we need here too!! 

It's a shame to want to walk away from our first home, lose alot of money, all because of the excessive train horn blowing! 

Please help me to figure out what I can do to get my community a quiet zone and fast. We are sleep deprived, and considering moving. Although I could never not disclose this to another buyer, I would feel horrible, because it is torture! 

Anyone please guide me in the right direction, please!! 

-Christie in Rootstown

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 6,811 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Sunday, March 18, 2012 6:50 AM

Get your local govenment to contact the FRA for what is necessary to be done to enact a quiet zone.  Expect your local taxes to rise for the expenses involved in the required changes.  NS is the carrier in your area and it is their Pittsburgh-Cleveland-Chicago main line.

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 9 posts
Posted by Theycallmesunny on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:05 AM

Thank you for the guidance. I hope something can be done. I know we would gladly pay a little more in taxes of it meant we could get a good nights sleep. 

Thanks again! 

  • Member since
    December, 2007
  • From: Southeast Michigan
  • 1,163 posts
Posted by Norm48327 on Sunday, March 18, 2012 11:00 AM

Durand,MI has four crossings designated quiet zones but were 'grandfathered'. The locals know, but the only warning for tourists is a 'no train horn' sign before the crossings.

Norm

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 493 posts
Posted by DwightBranch on Sunday, March 18, 2012 2:24 PM

And expect more fatalities at grade crossings if trains stop using their whistles, even with the quad gates etc..

  • Member since
    September, 2002
  • From: Back home on the Chi to KC racetrack
  • 2,011 posts
Posted by edbenton on Sunday, March 18, 2012 5:33 PM

My town looked into making the old Santa Fe mainline into a Quiet Zone a few years ago.  They stopped when they got the cost estimates for the 6 Grade Crossings to comply with all FRA requirements was over 10 MILLION dollars and then the 1 million a year to maintain the system.  Lets just say it went NO furher than that.  The only City Councilman that pushed for it was voted out of office so fast he still has not recovered from all the boots in his rear. 

 

The steep cost alone was enough to stop this town.  It would have meant doubling the Property Taxes and no one here would stand for that. 

Always at war with those that think OTR trucking is EASY.
  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 9 posts
Posted by Theycallmesunny on Sunday, March 18, 2012 7:37 PM

With all due respect, if there are more fatalities due to a decrease in horn blowing, then perhaps there should be less licenses granted. Anyone with common sense approaches tracks with caution and looks both ways before crossing, because IMO those gates and lights shouldn't always be trusted. If someone is stupid enough to try to beat a train, then that is another issue. 

My issue is the noise pollution. And it is noise pollution! Where we live there are two crossings - one before our house and one after behind us towards Sandy Lake Road - so we get the constant horns from both of those crossings...so there is no relief when a train or multiple trains come through...it's just back to back to back. 

I didn't know the cost would be that much...I guess there goes my quiet zone. I wouldn't want our taxes to double, nor would I expect others to go along with it when that is the outcome for a good nights sleep. Is there anything else that can be done to stop the excessive noise other than that? 

If not, I honestly think we will end up moving. This is by fat the busier and loudest track I had ever loved near in my life! And I had always lived within a mike or two of tracks. Never have I heard such traffic in my life. I just can't get over it. Not to mention how could we have missed this when we bought this house. We are going to lose big time trying to sell this place. Such a shame that citizens don't have more pull to stop something so awful. 

  • Member since
    January, 2002
  • From: PA
  • 4,294 posts
Posted by zugmann on Sunday, March 18, 2012 8:18 PM

When you buy your next house - please do us all a favor and spend an afternoon driving around looking for railroad tracks.  Airports, too.  And weather/fire sirens.  And highways.  Neighbors with loud cars.  Neighbors with barking dogs.  I'm sure there's some more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Dude, please stop.  You're giving me second-hand shame."

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 6,811 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Sunday, March 18, 2012 8:49 PM

I've got a complaint with all those that think garbage trucks should go about their business when the sun is up as well as those neighbors that think daylight is the time to ge a new roof on their house or have aborists using chainsaws non-stop wacking back trees.  Not to mention all those telemarketers calling at all hours of the day.

People are trying to sleep!  Quiet please!

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 9 posts
Posted by Theycallmesunny on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:12 PM

 Zugmann 

That was pretty rude and uncalled for. This is a forum, and I found this while searching for issues with train noise in my area. I chose to comment and put in my "two cents" because I live directly in the path of the tracks that were mentioned in this "bellyache" article. I was glad to have found someone with mutual feelings. 

I'm not one to complain much, but I was looking for help. If you feel my concern is a ridiculous rant, then don't read it. However, making one feel that their opinion and feelings on an issue are silly and insignificant is inappropriate.  

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 493 posts
Posted by DwightBranch on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:20 PM

I am afraid you will probably not get much sympathy here on a rail fan website, we are as a rule anti-NIMBY. it is just that there really is no other way for the trains to operate. Federal law requires all trains to blow the two long one short one long signal before and during the crossing of any public highway, and even if it didn't, trains cannot stop in any response to a vehicle in the crossing unless they are a long way away- around a mile for a long heavy train at 70MPH or so, and thus must have a way of warning cars at a great distance, which train whistles (or horns if you will) do. Moving tracks is out of the question also, I would bet that the tracks near your home have been there for well over 100 years, probably 130, and the cost of building them is exceedingly expensive. I'm sorry.

  • Member since
    April, 2001
  • From: US
  • 1,082 posts
Posted by ValleyX on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:22 PM

Springfield, Ohio, has had a quiet zone for several years now.  I wonder if their car/train accidents have increased, decreased, or stayed the same.  Surely, there are some statistics and facts on this.  Both Norfolk Southern and the city of Springfield would have the answer, I would think.

  • Member since
    January, 2002
  • From: PA
  • 4,294 posts
Posted by zugmann on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:30 PM

BaltACD

I've got a complaint with all those that think garbage trucks should go about their business when the sun is up as well as those neighbors that think daylight is the time to ge a new roof on their house or have aborists using chainsaws non-stop wacking back trees.  Not to mention all those telemarketers calling at all hours of the day.

People are trying to sleep!  Quiet please!

I know... no respect for us vampires  C-trick workers.

"Dude, please stop.  You're giving me second-hand shame."

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 9 posts
Posted by Theycallmesunny on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:35 PM

I do know there are laws and reasons why they have to sound their horns. We are placed right in the middle of a few crossings so as I stated, it's constant. I blame being new to Ohio period, and this area, and ourselves for not noticing this, but just wanted help. I know moving them would be out of the question...just wanted to quiet them lol. Thanks for the help. 

Also it would be interesting to find out the statistics about Springfield. I'm curious to know the cost of this, and the amount their taxes increased due to this. 

  • Member since
    October, 2006
  • From: Allentown, PA
  • 7,723 posts
Posted by Paul_D_North_Jr on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:36 PM

Self-help is going to be your best remedy here. 

Since you're only about 30 miles southeast of Cleveland, you should be able to find a noise abatement expert/ acoustical engineer, and/ or an architect with expertise in the problem.  A phone call and a couple hundred dollars for the expert to come out for site visit ought to tell you if there if some hope for you at a reasonable cost. 

Noise abatement is now a mature science, since the FAA has been subsidizing it at many airports, and this problem is of like kind - periodic low-frequency roars and tones.  Although I'm no expert, I  believe that steps such as replacing existing windows and glass doors with triple-pane ones with a noise-absorbing film or fabric go a long ways towards reducing the problem, as well as adding insulation to the exterior walls that are closest to the source of the sound.  [My house has 6" concrete walls with 2-1/2' foam insulation on both sides and triple-glazed windows mainly for energy efficiency reasons, but another fortunate result is that I can't really hear the Harley-Davidson motorcycles roaring out of the BBQ roadhouse and down the road on the other side of the block, nor the jets climbing out from the airport a few miles away - which is how I know about the FAA noise abatement program - nor the neighbor's lawn tractor, barking dogs, etc.]  Both of these steps will also help out with your heating and cooling bills, and as such may qualify for tax credits.  Further steps would be to remove the existing drywall and replace it with new and thicker - such as 5/8" thick or maybe a double-layer of 3/8" or 1/2" thickness - mounted on a sound-deadening material between it and the wall studs, such as rubber washers or a Z-shape thin steel piece; again, improve the insulation in the wall cavity behind the drywall while you're at it, as some are better than others at absorbing certain noise levels.  Finally, if a portion of your rear or side yard is towards the sound source, you might be able to install a wall or solid fence of some kind that will reduce the sound, as is done along the highways these days.

Expensive ?  Yes, somewhat, but cheaper than taking a loss on selling the house.   A lot of this - the windows and drywall, for example - can be done by a competent home-handyman type in a couple of weekends, especially with a friend or relative or two to help - none of this is rocket science.  If you can get together with your neighbor and possibly some others, you could all help each other - or get a discount from a builder or renovating contractor for having multiple jobs in the same place at the same time.  Finally, most of this work would also qualify for a home improvement or home equity loan, so the rate should be lower and the interest should be tax-deductible to help ease the pain.        

See, for instance: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noise_mitigation 

 http://www.citysoundproofing.com/understanding.html 

http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/program_offices/comm_planning/environment/review/noise 

http://www.noisecontrolproducts.com/

Another unlikely but possible solution is to see if one or more of the crossings can be closed or grade-separated with a bridge of some kind so that there is no more need for a horn or other regular sound warning at all.   

Good luck with it !

- Paul North. 

"This Fascinating Railroad Business" (title of 1943 book by Robert Selph Henry of the AAR)
  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 9 posts
Posted by Theycallmesunny on Sunday, March 18, 2012 9:58 PM

Thank you Paul! My husband mentioned to me Friday night when the trains were so bad, that we needed to get someone out to see if they can soundproof our bedroom. My reply was what about the kids who live here too and guests who stay...everyone else is annoyed am can't sleep but us? Lol. I would LOVE to open the windows on a night like tonight, but we just can't - not unless we want to wake up constantly. Our house is a colonial, and all bedroom are upstairs, so I'm sure it doesn't help matters? 

All those things sound costly, especially considering we put down everything we had to buy our first home. It was built in 99, has nice pella windows, but I doubt they are triple pane. So the house isn't terribly old, however mote than likely missing some of the better, more energy efficient products. I guess the first step in knowing what can be done would be to get someone out here for an estimate. Thanks for the help Paul. I appreciate it. 

  • Member since
    August, 2003
  • From: Antioch, IL
  • 2,911 posts
Posted by greyhounds on Sunday, March 18, 2012 10:17 PM

Is the requirement that all trains sound - - . - with a horn at all non quiet zone grade crossings obsolete?  Is it still around because no one will take the responsibility for removing it?  Does it really do any good?

Autos have changed since the requirement was long ago introduced.  People now drive around in sealed up climate controlled autos listening to tunes and/or the radio.  Do they actually hear the horn when approaching a crossing?  What would be the actual change in train-auto collisions if the trains didn't sound the horn at crossings protected with lights and gates?

I think it's time to get answers to these questions instead of mindlesly continuing a requirement that was established a long time ago.

 

"By many measures, the U.S. freight rail system is the safest, most efficient and cost effective in the world." - Federal Railroad Administration, October, 2009. I'm just your average, everyday, uncivilized howling "anti-government" critic of mass government expenditures for "High Speed Rail" in the US. And I'm gosh darn proud of that.
  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 493 posts
Posted by DwightBranch on Sunday, March 18, 2012 11:19 PM

No:

http://www.wnd.com/2007/12/44948/

  • Member since
    December, 2007
  • From: Georgia USA SW of Atlanta
  • 5,539 posts
CSX trains: Ohio
Posted by blue streak 1 on Monday, March 19, 2012 5:59 AM

Theycallmesunny

Anyone please guide me in the right direction, please!! 

-Christie in Rootstown

Sue the real estate agent.  Full disclosure laws may be a relief.

  • Member since
    March, 2009
  • From: Just South of the Arctic Circle
  • 6,947 posts
Posted by Sir Madog on Monday, March 19, 2012 9:13 AM

To the OP:

You have my sincere sympathy. I live within earshot of the main line between Hamburg and Bremen. There are over 200 train movements each day. I am just glad that German trains are not as "noisy" as the trains in the US and Canada, which seems to be constantly sounding their horns & bells. May be that´s one of the reasons why trains are not too popular over at your end of the Big Pond.

Sound proofing your windows will certainly help to a degree. How are your neighbors coping with the situation? May be you could team up with them and address the issue with your city administration and  CSX.

Noise will make you ill.

Cheers!

Ulrich

People in Hamburg don´t tan, they rust!

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • 9 posts
Posted by Theycallmesunny on Monday, March 19, 2012 9:45 AM

Oh geez! I think I would lose my mind if I had to hear that many trains per day. 

Being new to the street, I haven't met a alot of people yet, but the ones I have met, I always ask them if the train noise bothers them. Most have said yes it drives them crazy, and some that have been here for 12-13 years say they are used to it and it doesn't bother them unless they are awake. There were 4 houses for sale at one time (since Aug. 2011) 

on our dead end street - ours being one of them. It was for sale for 8 months and I often wonder if this was a factor. One just sold (lady said the trains are unreal and drive her crazy too), and the other 2 been on the market for a while and just keep reducing their price. Trust me lesson learned the hard way on this deal.

I was going to contact Ravenna officials about this to see what my next step would be or if I'm fighting a losing battle. I can't imagine I'm the only one near the tracks that has complained. 

Soundproofing the windows is an idea, but upstairs alone we have 8 windows and that could be costly I'm assuming? Still doesn't solve the issue of having to run the air all spring/summer long because we can't open our windows at night. The day time trains I can tolerate, it's the traffic at night that I have an issue with. That seems to be the time their routes begin because it just seems to quadruple in noise and traffic. 

I did find a website for Portage county that lists all the crossings, and the train traffic data within last few years, and if I'm reading it right, there are 30 per day and 30 per night? From what I noticed it picks up at night...alot! Also, the sites states if there are gates, alarms, etc. 

I have my work cut out for me, but I've found with help of responses to my post, a good start. 

Here is that website if anyone was interested in the traffic through this area: 

 

http://www.ohiorail.ohio.gov/crossings.php

 

 

  • Member since
    March, 2009
  • From: Just South of the Arctic Circle
  • 6,947 posts
Posted by Sir Madog on Monday, March 19, 2012 1:59 PM

Christie,

when we moved into our place, I thought I will go crazy. At night, it felt like the trains going straight through our bedroom .German trains are a lot less noisy, no horns, no bells, no grumbling sound of hard working Diesels. The line is all electric, so there is just a hum. The noisiest are our high speed trains, although there is a speed limit imposed. They still do 130 mph...

Cheers!

Ulrich

People in Hamburg don´t tan, they rust!

Join our Community!

Our community is FREE to join. To participate you must either login or register for an account.

Trains free email newsletter
NEWS » PHOTOS » VIDEOS » HOT TOPICS & MORE
GET OUR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER DELIVERED TO YOUR INBOX
Connect with us
ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER

Loading...