Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Trains passing some Orange County homes will stop blasting horns

Jim Owens
Orange County transportation officials announced Wednesday that many trains will no longer blast "choo-choo" as they approach a crossing, part of an effort to silence train horns throughout the largely residential region.

It's all thanks to an $85-million project that also included other improvements to 52 railroad crossings such as better warnings, synchronized traffic signals, additional gate arms and raised medians that help hinder motorists from driving around the stop.

Once those improvements were made, affected cities were eligible to apply to be in a "quiet zone," said Laura Scheper of the Orange County Transportation Authority.

Train engineers normally need to blow their horns up to four times when they approach a crossing, but in a quiet zone they are required to only use their horn under rare circumstances such as an emergency or a pedestrian on the track, Scheper said.

The cities of Anaheim, Orange, San Clemente and  Tustin already have received approval for quiet zones, and Scheper said other cities such as Irvine, San Juan Capistrano and Santa Ana are likely to soon follow.


Severed hand found near head under Hollywood sign

Arrests made in killing of five transients in 2008 massacre

Severed head, hand discovery ‘a real-life Sopranos,’ hiker says

-- Ari Bloomekatz

Photo: Orange resident Jim Owens holds his store-bought decibel meter while standing near the tracks as freight train blows its ear-piercing whistle in 2006. The retired labor relations executive lobbied to establish quiet zones.

Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Comments () | Archives (0)


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: