LANSING — State Rep. Tim Sneller (D-Burton) joined a bipartisan group of legislators today in introducing a four-bill package to update Michigan’s railroad crossing laws. House Bills 5640-5643 focus on increasing railway worker safety by defining “other on-track equipment” to add protections for maintenance workers at railroad crossings when they use these “train-like” machines that present the same dangers as a railroad train.

“As our methods of transportation continue adapting to new technological advances, it is critical that we update our laws to ensure our workers are safe,” Sneller said. “My colleagues and I have been at the forefront this year of issues that impact our state’s hardworking men and women, so I am pleased to join this bipartisan group of legislators in instituting these worker safety protections.”

The bill package would work to expand Michigan’s railroad crossing laws to include “other on-track equipment” for when a visible electronic or mechanical signal device gives a warning to let motorists know they must stop at a railroad crossing. The package defines “other on-track equipment” to mean any car, rolling stock or other device that, alone or coupled to another device, is operated on stationary rails. Rep. Sneller’s bill would amend the state’s Vehicle Code to include “other on-track equipment” for when a warning is activated and the person driving a vehicle must stop at a railroad crossing.

“Throughout the year, I have worked tirelessly to be a voice for the working people of our state,” Sneller said. “I am proud to now introduce legislation that would protect these men and women from the dangers of working near railroad crossings. I look forward to my colleagues supporting this important legislation.”