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WN: Railroad agrees to secure or remove cars
Sunday 24 Feb 2008, 07:11
Filed under: NCRA, Railroad

Sorry about the back log, been busy, the last two weekends. Willits news has a nice updated website with RSS feeds now!

By Linda Williams/TWN Staff Writer
Article Launched: 02/22/2008 12:25:35 PM PST

Firefighters battle a February 2007 rail car fire. (Linda Williams/TWN) (The Willits News)

The railroad has requested permission to scrap the four burned railcars on the Willits track from the US Department of Transportation following a nuisance abatement order from the city. It has also contracted with a local man to inspect the rail yard twice each day and to begin to address long neglected security issues in the area, including the securing of the cars not yet burned.

The North Coast Railroad Authority has contacted the other railcar owners and requested a schedule from them for the removal of the cars from the site. Several of the cars have already been stripped of copper wiring at some time in the past.

The NCRA is also planning a general cleanup of the site in the next weeks to remove the wastes generated by dumping and refuse from the various fires and vandalism.

After years of talk, these actions are the first physical signs the NCRA is addressing the health and safety issues associated with the abandoned cars.

Representatives from the city met with railroad officials on February 13 to discuss the nuisance abatement order issued by the city in January and railroad officials provided a detailed action plan about how the nuisance hazard was to be abated the same week.

“We understand the gravity of the problem and are very concerned about the health and safety issues in Willits and we are going to find a way to work collectively with the city to address the problem,” says NCRA Executive Director Mitch Stogner.

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