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The Edgemont Tribune; Jan. 5, 1944; Edgemont Hospital to reopen soon.

The Edgemont Tribune; Feb. 7, 1944; Automatic RR Signal to be installed.

The Edgemont Tribune; Dec. 27, 1944; Charley Soukup, head cook at the Post Restaurant, received injuries, when the car he was driving hit a moving train at the railroad crossing the B.H.O.D. highway about a half mile south of Edgemont Sunday morning at about 2:30.

Mr. Soukup was alone, and did not see the moving train in time to avert the collision.

The injured man was rushed to the Post hospital for medical attention, badly bruised, with possible internal injuries.

The automobile was badly wrecked as result of the impact.

Numerous accidents have occurred at this crossing since the new highway has been constucted.

Word was received a few days ago from the Hon. Francis Case, the Second or West-River District of South Dakota, relative to the Burlington railroad crossing south of Edgemont. The first two paragraphs of the letter are as follows:

"Since the crossing accident between the Black Hills Ordnance Depot and Edgemont, when some young people were killed and injured by driving into a long unlighted freight train, I have received suggestions from people of the community urging that freight cars be required to carry reflecting buttons so that a car approaching at night would be warned.

"The other day when the Interstate Commerce Commission was before my Appropriations subcommittee. I had an opportunity to pass the suggestion along during our discussion of their division on safety.

Inclosed with the letter is one from Commissioner Mahaffie of the Interstate Commerce Commission, wherein he calls attention to the fact that there are some 2,000,000 freight cars in this country and that to equip them with reflectors would entail a great amount of time and expense and would obviate only a relatively small percentage of crossing accidents, namely, those that occur at night from running into an unlighted freight train where the ground is comparatively straight and level on both sides of the tracks.

In this connection it should be noted that ever since assuming the command of this Post, Col. Keasler has tried unceasingly to eliminate the perils of this crossing. He has repeatedly taken up the matter with the general manager, Mr. Mullens, and with Mr. C. C. Holtorf, Superintendent of the Alliance Division, with a view of installing swinging lights in connection with a gong, which goes into operation while the train is still at a safe distance from the crossing and continues to operate until the last car has passed. The War Production Board, however, refused to authorize such an installation. Some half dozen persons have been injured or lost their lives at this crossing since the opening of this road to the Black Hills Ordnance Depot; and one wonders how many lives must be sacrificed before those charged with final responsibility deem it necessary to render this admittedly dangerous crossing safe. Col. Keasler is still striving to attain the solution of the problem.


On Saturday, Feb. 3, Col. James L. Keasler, Commanding Officer of the Black Hills Ordnance Depot, met with Mr. Meeker, State Highway Commission Engineer, at Pierre, S. Dak., at which time he was advised by Mr. Meeker that the necessary priorities had at last been obtained from the War Production Board, relative to materials necessary for the installation of an adequate automatic rail road signal at the crossing west of Edgemont on the B. H. O. D. Highway.

At the present time blueprints are in the process of completion by the Burlington Railroad at Chicago and the Highway Commission expects to receive these plans within the next few days when the Burlington railroad will be requested to secure a crew immediately for the installation of the signal light, and as soon as the Burlington has acted upon this request, work at the railroad crossing will commence; in any event, it is anticipated the light will be installed within the next week or ten days.

A committee of businessmen of Edgemont, representing the Chamber of Commerce and City Council conferred with Col. Keasler last week relative to this crossing which has been a hazard since its inception, having resulted in several crossing accidents and the lives of three persons.

Here is an example in point, of what can be accomplished by proper cooperation between officials, military and civilian of the Black Hills Ordnance Depot and the City of Edgemont.

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