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All tracks back open after railroad track construction

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Multiple track construction was miscommunication, officials say

By Lisa King

All Norfolk Southern Railroad tracks are back open now, officials say.

Tracks at three locations, Kentucky Street, Mack Walters and 7th Street were closed for track construction for several hours this morning, but all were back open by 1:30 p.m., officials say.

Shelbyville City Engineer and Public Works Director Jennifer Herrell said that railroad officials told her the situation was because of a miscommunication.

"I made phone calls today to see what was going on, especially since they closed Kentucky Street and Mack Walters at the same time. That was not their intention. The original plan was to close Kentucky at nine, do Kentucky, then jump over to Mack Walters then jump over to Old Finchville. There was miscommunication between the track supervisor and the [construction] crew and for some reason, they started Kentucky Street between seven-thirty and a quarter to eight and then before they finished that, they closed Mack Walters."

City and county officials say that railroad officials usually notify Shelby County 911 dispatch only, and then dispatchers spread the word around to police, the road department and public works. This time, however, those officials have said they received no notification from the railroad.

"I only found out about it this morning when I couldn't get across Kentucky Street," said Shelby County Deputy County Judge-Executive Rusty Newton.

Kentucky Street reopened at about 11:15 a.m., Mack Walters  reopened at noon, and 7th Street tracks reopened at 1:30 p.m.

Officials from Norfolk Southern have not yet responded to questions about the situation from The Sentinel-News.