Monday, May 21, 2018

Very important news for residents of the City of Lake Worth: Quiet Zones go into effect TODAY on FEC railroad tracks.

But first, before we get to the news from the Palm Beach Planning Transportation Agency. . .

Increasingly am hearing concern from many of the public here in the City of Lake Worth about “Quiet Zones” and whether there has been enough outreach to our residents who do not speak English or comprehend English well enough to understand what will be happening starting this week. Most everyone knows the safe and proper way to cross railroad tracks is at designated crossings. However, most everyone knows also that trespassing along and across the Florida East Coast (FEC) tracks happens quite frequently at all times of the day and night in this City.

The quiet zones in West Palm Beach along the FEC tracks that are used for Brightline passenger transport and freight traffic went into effect last week. The quiet zones in the City of Lake Worth go into effect today (Monday, May 21st).

This week might be a good time to get the Neighborhood Assoc. Presidents’ Council involved, or another volunteer organization like the Guatemalan Maya Center or El Sol in Jupiter (which has a strong social media presence) to find out the level of knowledge about quiet zones in the Guatemalan community — which is just one population of immigrants in this City — many of whom do not speak English. 

Why might this be a good idea? Because. . .

We need to “maximize our outreach activities to educate
the public” about quiet zones”
along FEC tracks.

Nick Uhren, the Executive Director of the Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency (TPA) sent out the following information last week:

“Our office received the attached update from Brightline yesterday regarding construction of the supplemental safety measures (SSMs) required for quiet zone designation on the FEC railway. At this point, they have completed construction of the SSMs and installed and covered the required ‘No Train Horn’ signs in all cities except Boynton Beach.

West Palm Beach and Lake Worth have filed their notices of establishment (NOEs) with effective dates of May 14 [TODAY] and May 21, respectively. All other municipalities are now able to file their NOEs to allow for quiet zones following the 21-day notice period.”

FYI. For why it’s a good idea to be alert along the FEC train tracks and right-of-way, while having lunch this week at El Bohio, an excellent Cuban restaurant in Lantana, a Brightline train passed by going north:

Press release from the TPA continues:

“Brightline has requested, and I echo this point, that we all maximize our outreach activities to educate the public on the removal of the train horns and the importance of safe behavior at rail crossings. Please engage every possible channel in your efforts on this.

In Boynton Beach, the agreement providing TPA funds for design and construction of four (4) additional SSMs to support quiet zone designation was executed last week and these SSMs should be constructed in 2–3 months. At that time, Boynton Beach will also be able to file their NOE for quiet zone designation.”

A timely message from Brightline: