by Cathy O'Connor via The Journal Record: June 21, 2016
For many years there has been discussion, planning and progress toward the creation of a quiet zone along the Burlington-Northern Santa Fe rail line between NE Seventh Street and NE 16th Street in downtown Oklahoma City. In recent years the area of interest has expanded to include intersections as far north as Wilshire Boulevard and south to SE 23rd Street. The increase in commercial and residential development downtown prompted the effort, as residents and businesses struggled with the loud sound of the train horns blowing frequently while passing through the area.
Without a quiet zone in place, the Federal Railroad Administration requires train engineers to sound the warning whistles at least 15 seconds in advance of all crossings. The FRA defines a quiet zone as “a stretch of track where the FRA has agreed that trains are not required to routinely sound the horn at each public crossing except in emergencies, such as someone on the track or workers within 25 feet of the track or at the discretion of the crew, as appropriate.”