SYLVANIA, OH (Toledo News Now) - Sylvania residents are concerned about the possibility of trains carrying ethanol through their backyards.
There are about five miles of railroad tracks that were torn up decades ago between Riga and Ottawa Lake. Through a proposed development project, those tracks could be reinstated, and trains carrying ethanol would be going through residential areas of Sylvania.
The railroad tracks run in the backyard of many Sylvania residents and could become part of a quicker route for rail shippers.
"You're cutting off seven to eight days of travel time. You're cutting off 780 miles, and that's going to substantially chow down on the expense that they're going to see doing their rail shipments," explained Mark Dobronski, head of the Adrian and Blissfield Railroad.
It is called the Riga-Ottawa Lake Project. Under the project proposal, railroad tracks that were torn up years ago would be put back in place. Those tracks would connect to the same tracks that run through Sylvania.
Residents are concerned.
"I think the increase in trains going by is a concern just for the noise factor of their horns all hours of the day and night," said Lynn Kezeur.
The trains would carry ethanol through the area. Residents say though they do not expect the worst, this does cause some concern.
"The fact that it's ethanol, is obviously a concern that if anything were to happen, it'd be a bigger deal. But I mean, usually the trains are pretty slow. I don't really forsee anything going wrong with it, but in a case that something would, it'd be - it would be bad," said Kezeur.
Dobronski says residents would not notice a difference because there would not be more trains going through the area. He adds ethanol should not be a concern.
"I know what the trains are carrying through there presently, and if ethanol is a concern, I've got to tell you, there's other materials going through there that's a much greater concern than ethanol," said Dobronski.
The Riga-Ottawa Lake Project is a candidate for construction between 2016 and 2020.