SD inspectors find flaws in state rail lines, including on Mitchell to Rapid City route
Railroad inspectors who just kicked off a project to examine the quality and safety of state-owned rail lines have found uneven rails, broken or shifted ties and insufficient ballast to support tracks, including on the Mitchell to Rapid City line.
The South Dakota Railroad Board is sending members to inspect track conditions along state-owned lines and checking on maintenance by private operators who use them.
The board received its first informal report Wednesday about the Mitchell-Rapid City line, which is operated by Dakota Southern Railroad and whose officials were asked by the state on Wednesday to develop an improvement plan to ensure safety and security of the tracks.
The three members who conducted the tour — Harlan Quenzer of Mitchell, Gary Doering of Cavour, and Jerry Cope of Rapid City — said they found wide variances along the line on both sides of Kimball.