More than 90 per cent of VIA Rail repairs completed at Barrhaven level rail crossings

VIA Rail says they're more than 90 per cent done with repairs and maintenance of the signals in Barrhaven.

As of July 12, 119 improvements have been made out of the 132 planned for the level rail crossings. Another seven will be completed before the end of this week, according to VIA spokesperson Mylene Belanger.

She wrote in an email that since the May 15 briefing cameras have been installed with a 15 day recording capability at the most problematic locations of Fallowfieldm, Woodroffe and the Transitway. Rail term has also completed its blitz 2-4-8 year inspections at all crossings, she wrote.

Belanger also wrote that remote failure monitoring has been installed at all crossings. That system allows "immediate detection of any failure and provide rapid response by VIA Rail's contractor."

The biggest improvement, according to Barrhaven Councillor Jan Harder has been proactive communication, settling the nerves of residents in Barrhaven and commuters alike.

"And we're able to message to the people 'you may see some workers working on here, they may be manually stopping you and that's okay because this is what they're doing,'" Harder said, saying she's used the power of her office, Twitter and the city's communications to get that message out with the help of VIA Rail.

She said there has been a noted decrease in the frequency and severity of the issues with the level rail crossings.

"But, we're still seeing some errors at Woodroffe and the OC Transpo Transitway from the system download, so anyways the good news is that VIA is absolutely on top of that all the time," she said.

VIA is working with manufacturer Siemens to do a review of the operating system which was recently installed. The results of that review are due this week.

When all of the upgrades are complete VIA will be issuing a public update.

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