TERRASSE-VAUDREUIL – Several Transports Quebec workers spent much of Thursday morning rush hour at the level crossing in Terrasse-Vaudreuil.
They were waiting for the heavy traffic to pass through the small town, west of downtown Montreal, so they could activate new traffic lights at the intersection where CP and CN tracks meet a local road.
The lights are designed to make the level crossing a lot safer, but many drivers are seeing red.
“This doesn’t work,” one driver yelled as he drove by.
The town council opposes TransportsQuebec’s new initiative fearing it will cause many traffic tie-ups in a small town of less than two thousand.
“Terrible. A real nightmare,” said Jean-Pierre Brazeau, a town councillor and retired CP locomotive engineer.
Brazeau admits the lights may help prevent people from getting caught between the sets of CP and CN tracks while the barriers are down, though some people may try to drive through the red lights before the barriers descend.
“That’s going to create a lot of frustration because people are going to get fed up of waiting and waiting. So they’re going to go and bypass it,” he said.
Global News witnessed several cars driving through the red lights on Thursday morning.
Brazeau says what’s needed is an underpass to be built to alleviate the problems and reduce the risk of an accident.
Last fall, a car was hit by an AMT train after the driver abandoned her stalled vehicle on the tracks.
Brazeau says more than 100 trains pass through everyday and more than 1,000 vehicles drive over the level crossing.
CP, CN, Via Rail and the AMT all use the tracks.