Photo: Todd Gill, Fayetteville Flyer
A portion of Frisco Trail is closed this week while workers complete safety improvements at the Dickson Street railroad crossing in Fayetteville.
The project includes new crossing panels, rails, signals, and safety gates that will lower when a train passes through.
Crews recently rerouted a section of Frisco Trail to veer away from the work area on Dickson Street. Trail users are asked to follow detour signs which lead to West Avenue.
Work hours will be from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. through Friday, according to a news release.
Talk of safety improvements at the Dickson Street crossing first began in 2013 when the Arkansas & Missouri Railroad proposed a cost-sharing agreement with the city in response to a request from Mayor Lioneld Jordan for four easements needed to build new sections of the city’s trail system.
Aldermen approved the proposal about a year later when they agreed to contribute up to $250,000 for the estimated $561,000 project.
The Federal Railroad Administration rates Dickson Street as the most likely crossing in Fayetteville to include a collision between a train and a vehicle. Federal data shows an average of four trains pass through the crossing daily, and 12,800 vehicles cross the tracks each day, making it the busiest railroad crossing in the city.
Three train-vehicle collisions have occurred at the Dickson Street crossing since 1999. The most recent accident happened in September 2012 when a Nissan Xterra, driven by a 29-year-old-woman, was broadsided by a train. The woman told police she did not hear the train as it approached the crossing. Her vehicle was dragged about 30 feet north of Dickson Street and destroyed several sections of guard fencing before the train came to a stop.
Fayetteville Train-Vehicle Collision Probability
|Crossing||Daily Traffic||Warning Device||Chance of Collision|
|Dickson Street||12,800||Flashing lights||3.97%|
|Poplar Street||4,450||Flashing lights||3.70%|
|Sycamore Street||8,600||Flashing lights||1.87%|
|North Street||10,600||Flashing lights||1.43%|
|Gregg Avenue (Wilson Park)||1,805||Stop signs||1.42%|
|15th Street||5,400||Flashing lights||1.15%|
|Sunrise Mountain Road||1,050||Stop signs||0.80%|
|Hill Avenue||1,250||Wigwags, Bells||0.68%|
|Gregg Avenue (Ridout)||111||Crossbucks||0.06%|
|Cato Springs Road||1,050||Gates||0.04%|
|Van Asche Drive||580||Gates||0.02%|
Source: Staff report / Federal Railroad Administration