Trouble at the tracks: Drivers raise crossing safety concerns
GUELPH -- The train crossing at the intersection of Edinburgh Road and Paisley Street in Guelph is known for causing traffic delays.
The train stops cars in both directions and causes plenty of headaches, especially for people living nearby. Some residents said the crossing can hold up traffic for up to 15 minutes and it's causing some road rage.
Mark Vonmaydell lives in the area and captured video of a truck ignoring road closed signs and driving over front yards.
"This morning the pylons were here, the tree crews were here, the road was completely blocked and this driver, without even hesitating, just went up here on the boulevard and just kept flying," he said.
The video showed Vonmaydell chasing the truck after it drove on his lawn.
He's lived in Southampton Street for nearly 20 years. He said this is the second time this year police have been called because of aggressive drivers trying to escape traffic jams caused by the train crossing.
"They're waiting at that intersection for a while and when the train reverses or stops, they get frustrated and then they just kind of go down the first street they can," resident James Bryson said. "At that point, they're frustrated or mad and they don't really think about fast they're going."
"There's 20 kids under the age of 10 just in this street," Vonmaydell said.
Staff with the City of Guelph said they're aware of the issue.
"We are in the stages of working with CN there to see if there's anything that can be done to reduce the frequency of trains switching there," manager of transportation and engineering Steve Anderson said.
“(CN) apologizes to residents and commuters for the inconvenience caused and assures them that the Company remains in dialogue with the City to determine possible short and long-term investments that would improve operations and the commuter experience," a statement from CN said.
The city said it's not currently planning on building an overpass on either of the streets.
However, residents said the issue captured on camera is less about the train and more about driver reaction.
"It was a closed road," Vonmaydell said. "He just chose to make his own road."
Vonmaydell was able to get the driver's licence plate. He said Guelph police told him the driver was from out of town.
Police also said the driver asked them to pass along an apology to Vonmaydell and other nearby residents after the incident.