Hanover has concerns over railroad tracks

HANOVER – There could potentially be a “hazardous” situation in Han-ford Bay. Highway Super-intendent Steve D’Angelo said he received information about the situation near the CSX railroad tracks about a week ago.

At the Hanover Town Board workshop session Monday, D’Angelo said he received a call from Hanford Bay residents about the “hazardous condition.” Two residents have approached him regarding erosion.

“Out toward the lake, the bank is giving way. It’s giving way close enough to the tracks where I think it’s a big concern,” D’Angelo said.

To remedy the problem, D’Angelo called a representative from CSX Railroad. A railroad foreman returned his call, thinking the complaint was a joke initially. The representative said a foreman went from Hanford Bay to Silver Creek on the tracks and did not find any significant problem.

“The (CSX representative) says (CSX) is going to be working on the Hanford tracks in the next week or two. … That was the last I heard from that. I have everything marked down and we’re going to cover our behinds on this,” D’Angelo said.

The residents, who reported the issue, have taken video footage of the track that shows trees uprooting and coming down the bank, in addition to concrete being exposed. D’Angelo said water coming off from the railroad tracks, and high waves and winds off the lake could be a reason for exposure of the concrete – meant to prevent bank erosion.

“I take bank slides very seriously. If they’re not taken care of, they don’t take care of themselves. They get worse and worse and worse,” he said.

Since D’Angelo is concerned about the situation, he has contacted Chautau-qua County Emergency Services Director Julius Leone. Leone said he is going to plan an exercise for first responders involving crude oil railroad cars as a precaution.

He said if the bank were to ever give way, chemicals could spread into Lake Erie.

“We hope to heck it never happens because if it does, it’s going to be nasty. Especially with all the stuff that will blow out into the lake; it’s something that would be compounded,” D’Angelo said.

The town board did not take any action on this matter.

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