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New semaphores on Carbonville Road will not be your basic traffic signals

New "unarmed" railroad signals stand at the ready at the rebuilt railroad crossing at 760 North Carbonville Road.

Sun Advocate publisher

Many a Carbon resident has driven down Carbonville Road lately and seen the construction of a new railroad crossing at 760 West going in, but few imagined that a traffic light would appear there about the time the crossing was nearly done. It seemed a bit funny to some, at an intersection that doesn't get that much traffic.

But once in operation, that light will provide safety, particularly for school buses.

"Over the years there have been a couple of fatalities at that railroad crossing," said Carbon County Road Supervisor Brad McCourt on Thursday. "It was time something needed to be done and with some federal funding we were able to get this project going."

McCourt explained that the back ends long vehicles such as school buses extend over the tracks while they are stopped at the intersection. "They would stop at the stop sign and they would be parked on the tracks," he said. "We needed to fix that."

The change in the crossing will improve the grade as well as the fact that the intersection will now become a full four road intersection instead of just three as before. The control lights will halt traffic on Carbonville Road when a train is coming to make sure no traffic is backed up on the tracks.

While none of the fatalities at the crossing were the result of school buses in any way the safety of those vehicles were paramount in the planning of this project.

The crossing also gets a lot of traffic from residents as well as the Questar operations station that is located near the crossing as well.

While the crossing looks to be nearly done, however, a snafu has occurred that will delay it's opening a little longer.

"We had some power problems for the operations there," said McCourt. "Rocky Mountain Power is working with us to correct that situation."

McCourt said that they hope to have the entire operation up and running by the time school starts.

It will actually be the first traffic light that is on a county-owned road. All others in the county are on incorporated city streets or on state highways. Because of that McCourt says the county has an agreement with the Utah Department of Transportation that will take care of maintaining and repairing the stop lights as needed.

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