Washington panel accepting grant applications for rail safety projects
The state of Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission is accepting applications from railroad companies, local governments and other agencies interested in funding to make safety improvements at railroad crossings and along tracks. Funding is provided through the state Grade Crossing Protective Fund. Grants are typically limited to $20,000 for each project. Applications will be accepted through Jan. 1, 2019, and grant awards will be made as applications are received and approved by the commission, according to a press release. Railroad safety improvement projects may include upgrading active warning devices at crossings; installing energy efficient LED flashing lights; replacing crossbucks and signage at crossings; constructing pedestrian sidewalks for safe passage; and building fences to prevent trespassing on tracks. The commission will select proposals for projects based on costs, severity of the hazard and the safety benefits resulting from the completed projects.