The City of San Luis Obispo has received several inquiries regarding fencing along the railroad tracks following the tragic loss of life that occurred near the Murray Street and Hathway Street intersection. Safety is the top concern of the city with respect to the railroad tracks. Over the years, the city has worked cooperatively with Union Pacific, private property owners, Cal Poly, and the San Luis Coastal Unified School District to enhance safety through fencing and educational outreach efforts.
All of the city’s projects, such as our Railroad Safety Trail, include seven-foot-tall, black security fencing to prevent pedestrians and bicyclists from crossing the tracks. In the location proximate to the accident, the security fencing terminates at the end of the bike path, which is the extent of our latest project. The city has been pursuing an agreement with Union Pacific to extend the Railroad Safety Trail; including security fencing is part of that plan. The city will continue to make these discussions a high priority to complete these important safety improvements. The events of July 15 are a tragic reminder the railroad right-of-way can be a dangerous environment for pedestrians and bicyclists. It is our hope that through further safety enhancements and educational efforts this form of tragedy will be avoided in the future.