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Railroad crossing scheduled for repair

I use Fir Street fairly often and can't help but notice the terrible condition of the railroad crossing about a half-block north of Barnett Road. It's just a spur line that I don't think is even used anymore, but crossing it requires a good aim to miss the largest of the potholes between the tracks. I think railroad crossings are the responsibility of the railroad, but can't the city do something to force them to fix it?

— Bob, Medford

Bob, good news! Your question — and perhaps a little of our pestering — prompted a local railroad maintenance crew to check out the condition of the spur crossing on Fir Street, where it identified some areas that required “minor maintenance.”

The crew has added the work to its to-do list and will most likely get to it after the holidays, said Carla Groleau, a spokeswoman for Genesee & Wyoming Inc., the holding company for the Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad Inc. (CORP).

Groleau believes the spur line is still active and serves a customer in that area.

“We appreciate being contacted and hope it wasn’t an inconvenience for anyone, and we’ll be out there as soon as we can to make the repairs,” she said.

The spur crossing belongs to CORP, according to county records, and predates the street. It is not public right-of-way and, therefore, the city of Medford does not maintain it, said Medford Public Works Director Cory Crebbin.

Bob, hopefully, you won’t need to dodge those potholes much longer — just one more thing to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. To see a collection of columns, go to mailtribune.com/youasked. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.