City council directs staff to ask all kinds of questions about rail track safety & report to the public. Good start.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON. April 30, 2013.  Progress on getting something done with those locations where there is no barrier at all making it very easy for anyone to skip across four railway tracks.  Problem is that in the first three months of this year three people were not able to skip across quite fast enough and they were killed by a train whose path they could not get out of.

Denise Davy brought the problem to a Council committee earlier in the month and brought enough information and data with her then to convince Council to do something.  They issued a Staff Direction with seven parts to it that called for staff to:

Direct the Director of Transportation Services to consult the Minister of State (Transport) and request that:  The Railway Association of Canada and Transport Canada investigate the issues of safety and access to rail lines throughout Burlington.Report publicly the investigation and its findings; and

Direct the Director of Transportation Services to consult with Go Transit and Metrolinx on participating in the investigation through the Ministry of Transportation; and

 Direct the Director of Transportation Services to consult Police Services, Health and Public Works Departments in the Region of Halton to participate in the investigation; and

 Direct the General Manager of Development and Infrastructure to involve City of Burlington staff to assist with the above; and

 Direct the Director of Roads and Parks Maintenance to review publicly held lands that abut railway properties and take the appropriate corrective

action; and

 Direct the City Clerk to notify the Region of Halton and its lower -tier municipalities (Town of Oakville, Town of Milton, Town of Halton Hills) of the

staff direction; and

Direct the City Clerk to notify Jane McKenna, MPP-Burlington, Mike Wallace, MP-Burlington and Lisa Raitt, MP – Halton of the staff direction.

That’s a pretty impressive Staff Direction – the 18th that has been issued this year if you count those sorts of things.

With GO train traffic  to increase to 500 a month passing through Burlington by the end of June, Denise Davy feels the city doesn’t have much time to get some kind of barriers in place at those locations where people tend to scoot across the railway tracks as a short cut.

So what next?  Well there will be a meeting at city hall and then the different players in the game will be pulled together and another meeting will take place.  The public might see something come before council before the summer break in August.

Denise Davy has gotten the easy part done – now to get the wagon moving.  Polite badgering and reminding them all of the Mayor’s words when he said “If there had been three people killed on Fairview Street in the past three months we would have been all over this.

Time to do just that – get all over this and hope that there is not another trespass death before some action is taken.

 Davy is an experienced journalist and knows how to work a source – now she has to work six of them and constantly ask; what’s been done.

 It won’t be easy.

Denise Davy will have tucked herself into bed Monday night knowing that she did well by the son she had who was tragically killed in an accident on a set of railway tracks.

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