The Vermont Statutes Online
Subchapter 004 : FARM CROSSINGS, CATTLE GUARDS, FENCES, AND WATERCOURSES(Cite as: 5 V.S.A. § 3639)
§ 3639. Farm crossings and cattle guards; construction and maintenance
(a) A person or corporation owning or operating a railroad shall construct and maintain farm crossings of the road for the use of the proprietors of lands adjoining the railroad, and cattle guards at all farm and road crossings sufficient to prevent cattle and animals from getting on the railroad. A farm crossing may be temporarily or permanently closed or discontinued by mutual agreement between all parties having an interest therein. If no such mutual agreement can be reached by such interested parties, then a person or corporation owning or operating a railroad and desiring to close any farm crossing shall make application to the Transportation Board. The Board shall thereupon give notice to all parties interested, in such manner as the Board may direct, of hearing on the application, the hearing to be in the county where such crossing is located. After the hearing, a person or corporation owning or operating a railroad shall not close such farm crossing without the approval of the Transportation Board. A person aggrieved by the closing of a farm crossing after January 1, 1955 by a person or corporation owning or operating a railroad may notify the Transportation Board by registered or certified mail of the closing, and thereupon the Board shall conduct a hearing. Notice and place of hearing shall be as set forth in this subsection. The Transportation Board may require the reopening of any such crossing and make such other order as is permitted in section 3649 of this title. At any such hearing, the burden of proof shall rest with the person or persons effecting or seeking to effect the closing of such farm crossing. Any person aggrieved by an order of the Transportation Board may, in accordance with Rule 74 of the Vermont Rules of Civil Procedure, appeal to the Superior Court, whereupon such cause shall be tried as an original action brought under the provisions of 12 V.S.A. § 402.
(b) A person or railroad corporation closing any farm crossing in violation of a provision of this section or failing to comply with any such order shall be fined not less than $50.00 nor more than $500.00 and any person aggrieved by such violation may recover his or her damages in an action on this statute. (Amended 1959, No. 329 (Adj. Sess.), § 39(b), eff. March 1, 1961; 1973, No. 193 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. April 9, 1974; 1993, No. 172 (Adj. Sess.), § 59; 2017, No. 113 (Adj. Sess.), § 12; 2019, No. 14, § 6, eff. April 30, 2019.)