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Railroad crossing controls disabled due to smoking train; drivers urged to watch for oncoming trains

Traffic control arms at railroad crossings along the Burlington Northern Santa Fe tracks have been disabled after a smoking train was forced to make an emergency stop.

The crossing arms are now stuck in the up position and police are urging drivers to watch for oncoming trains before crossing the tracks.

The trains will travel 3-to-5 miles per hour, said Police Commander Floyd Higdon.

BNSF railroad representatives have been contacted about the problem, Higdon said.

The smoke was noticed coming from the train just before noon, police said. Merced County firefighters responded to the fire near Olive Avenue and Highway 59.