NewsPasco County


Over a dozen Land O Lakes families stuck as CSX tears up only road to homes

Posted at 4:50 PM, Jan 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-30 18:52:40-05

LAND O LAKES, Fla. — Over a dozen families can't get in or our of their rural neighborhood because a major railroad maintenance project has cut off access to their only road.

CSX is doing work in Hillsborough and Pasco Counties including the crossing repairs at Tower Road in Land O' Lakes where neighbors say they're stuck.

Residents reached out to ABC Action News because the dirt road was torn up to do the maintenance repairs on the CSX highway-rail grade crossings.

That road is the only way in and out, according to neighbors, and they say they were given less than a 24 hour notice to the project.

Families like Andrea Clark tell us they have one vehicle trapped on each side of the railroad tracks, so they drive back and forth, parking their vehicles and then walk over the construction tracks.

Other families tell ABC Action News they can't get to their farms with their trucks because they can't go over the tracks.

Clark said they were told the fix would be days away, which was a concern because there would be no access if there was an emergency.

A spokesperson for Pasco County tells us they were able to find a back dirt road on private property through a ranch that will be an access point for emergency vehicles only.

When we asked about the people stuck, we were told it was not a county project.

A spokesperson for CSX sent us this statement by email:

“As part of the company’s routine infrastructure maintenance program, CSX is conducting repairs on highway-rail grade crossings throughout Land O’ Lakes, FL. CSX has been closely coordinating with the county officials to complete crossing repairs at Tower Road, and we expect to re-open the crossing tomorrow morning, barring any weather delays or other unexpected issues. CSX apologizes to community members who may be impacted by this and we appreciate the public's patience while we complete this important work, which is critical to ensuring the safety of motorists using these crossings and to maintaining a safe, reliable freight rail network.”