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Aransas Pass community concerned over railroad crossing hazard

The lights weren't flashing and there were no loud warnings or any barriers separating vehicles from the train.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — One woman traveling through Aransas Pass was stunned when she saw a train passing by without the railroad arms positioned down. 

Sarah Michaels was on her daily commute to work in Port Aransas when she and other cars stopped on the road to find a train passing. 

The scary part is that the lights weren't flashing, and there were no loud warning or barriers separating vehicles from the train. 

"I was just I was in shock. It was just, it was complete shock," Michaels said. 

With no visual ques to warn her, Michaels said the only thing that alerted her of the train's presence was the horn of the locomotive itself. She adds that with present technology, other motorists may not have heard the train.

"I know we really shouldn't do this, but some people do drive with earbuds in or the music really loud. Had someone not seen that, they would have turned right into that train," Michaels said.

In an effort to calm her nerves, Michaels called her father, who told her to take the matter to Union Pacific.

"He was like, you know, Union Pacific. This is something that they should have already been notified about, because I doubt you're the the first person that's that this has happened to," Michaels said.

Taking to her social media, Michaels posted about the incident and received mixed comments from residents. Some residents even commenting that their was adequate signage. 

"I went through all of the comments, a lot of people said, you know, they said there was a blue sign on the actual, like the railroad sign, which I personally didn't see one," Michaels said. "I think it's because I was in shock like, this really just happen like that. I really just witnessed this."

The private Aransas Pass community page shared their concerns. 

Union Pacific Railroad provided the below statement:

Union Pacific is actively installing lights and gates at three railroad crossings in Aransas Pass: Wilson, Goodnight and Beasley streets. Until they are installed and operating, flag persons will be present at the crossings whenever a train is scheduled to arrive.

Michaels said the situation can serve as a wakeup call for residents and visitors passing through Aransas Pass. 

"Pay attention where you're driving, because accidents like that can happen. We can't put it all on Union Pacific when, you know, people should be paying attention as well."

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