Rail Crossings

What can be done to reduce the time I have to wait for a train to go through a crossing?

Trains operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, making it hard to predict when one will be traveling through a certain crossing.

We try to limit the amount of time any crossing is blocked on a mainline track. Our business depends on keeping trains moving. Unfortunately trains sometimes experience conditions that force them to stop. Those conditions may be related to equipment, track or weather conditions. In those cases, BNSF works to correct the condition and to resume the safe movement of trains.

What is the process for getting gates and lights installed at rail crossings?

Most public rail crossings are equipped with passive rail crossing warning signs, such as crossbucks, yield signs, stop signs and pavement markings. Any change from passive warning devices to active warning devices is determined by individual state agencies and road authorities, typically the department of transportation in most states. Each state determines if it is appropriate to equip public rail crossings with active warning devices, such as gates and flashing lights.

As part of this process, each state may use either state or federal safety funds to help pay for the appropriate warning devices based upon the state's priority list of crossings for improvement. Once the location for an appropriate warning device is determined, the state reviews and approves the cost and enters into an agreement with the railroad to install the specified signals.

If you believe a crossing near you is a good candidate for upgrading from a passive warning sign to an active warning, please contact your state department of transportation. BNSF works cooperatively with the states on our network to install active warning devices on the public crossings that the state has determined are most in need of such upgrades.


CALL 800-832-5452

To report a vehicle stalled on a crossing or to report false activation of crossing gates and lights, call 800-832-5452 immediately.Crossing signal

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