Biloxi Mayor Pushes for Railroad Crossing Stop Signs

The City of Biloxi put up stop signs at every railroad crossing several years ago, but then had to take some of them down because the state transportation department told the city that signs aren't allowed at crossings that already have safety equipment.

"I think they need to go back up, yes sir," Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway says.  "I think we need to revisit that and put 'em back."

The state transportation department says stop signs are not placed at crossings with active warning systems because as a rail engineer Steven Edwards told us, "The devices are stop signs. When the signals activate, they become a stop light and drivers are supposed to, by law, stop. There's no need to disrupt traffic flow when a train isn't coming, and that's what a stop sign does."

But Holloway isn't convinced the warning devices stop drivers.

"We've had several accidents there. We've got the bells and whistles at Rodenburg, we've had several accidents there," Mayor Holloway says.

Stop signs are still up at some crossings. Holloway says they should be up at all the crossings, and Biloxi's Police Chief agrees.

"The fact that there are bells and whistles there and you cross that track a hundred, two hundred, three hundred times and those bells and whistles are not going off you can just as easily cross that track when a train's coming, and those whistles are going off and you never hear or see them, but if you stop every single time based on the fact there's a stop sign there, I feel that's the best way to go," Chief Tommy Moffett says.

Holloway says it may be time for a new policy, if it means stopping trains and cars from colliding. He says in the year after the city put up the stop signs at all crossings, there were no fatalities at the crossings or on any city street.