BESSEMER, Ala. (WIAT) – Two trains are stopped on the tracks in Bessemer Friday night. It’s been blocking traffic all day and causing some concern for area first responders.
The trains are blocking several intersections including the highly traveled Highway 1-50. We’re told the trains have been stopped here on the tracks for over 24 hours and police are worried it could slow down response times if an emergency happens. But the train company said they are working to get the trains moved as soon as possible.
Lt. Christian Clemons said there are 20 intersections along the tracks that are blocked leaving only two places open to cross.
CBS 42 did reach out to Norfolk Train Company, they said the trains are stopped because of crew restraints. They’re actually offering new incentives to hire more conductors to help with this.
Lt. Clemons said he hopes the train company can get this resolved soon.
“With that many intersections blocked it lengthens the response time for first responders, your police and fire, and that’s not something that we really need in Bessemer, and I know the citizens in Bessemer would really like that quick response,” Clemons said.
Norfolk Southern Trains sent the following statement to our newsroom:
“We never want to inconvenience a member of the community with blocked crossings. Our railroad plays a vital role in the nation’s supply chain, helping to move the goods that power our economy. We are working hard to keep our trains moving efficiently and minimize these types of impacts as much as possible.” -Norfolk Southern Trains Company
The train company said they are hoping to have one train moved soon. In the meantime, Clemons said you can cross at 32nd street and at 1st and division streets.