The Times Junction


By: Clifton Spires, Jr. - County Editor

Huron County Commissioner Terry Boose will chair a rail safety task force that will identify local concerns about railroad crossings.

At Thursdays commissioners meeting, Boose accepted the chairmanship invitation of country Emergency Management Agency Director Bill Ommert, who is in charge of organizing the task force.

Ommert reported at least one other person, Ronald Atkins of Willard, volunteered to serve.

The task force is the county's response to Tuesday's meeting with Dennis and Vicky Moore, a Canal Fulton couple who co-founded the Angels on Track Foundation. Through the foundation, the Moores work to upgrade safety signals at all the unmarked crossings in Ohio.

Angels on Track is funded with $5 million the Moores won from Conrail in a Stark County Common Pleas Court civil case. The case stemmed from a March 25, 1995 accident in which the Moores' 16-year-old son and two of his friends died after a Conrail train stuck their car at an unmarked crossing on the Stark-Wayne county line. Another Moore son and two other young people received serious injuries in the accident.

One of the county commissioners will be traveling to Columbus next week to discuss Senate Bill 207, introduced by State Sen. Jeffry Ambruster, R-North Ridgeville. If passed, the bill would hike the fines for blocked crossings from a fourth degree to a first degree misdemeanor. The offending railroad company also could be fined $1,000 for blocking longer than five minutes.

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