Orbisonia Borough Council members were briefed about an incident that damaged railroad ties as well as the railroad bridge on the East Broad Top Railroad at the first monthly meeting they’ve held in person since March Wednesday evening.
According to borough council member Matt Gilliland, who also serves as the fire chief for the Orbisonia-Rockhill Volunteer Fire Co., the incident has been ruled arson, and he asks that if anyone knows any information about the incident to contact the fire company so they can aid state police at Huntingdon in their investigation.
A report from state police at Huntingdon states they responded to a report of damage to railroad ties at East Broad Top Railroad in Rockhill Borough at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday.
Upon investigation, police discovered someone set fire to multiple railroad ties and spray painted the railroad bridge as well.
Police are also asking that if anyone has any information regarding the incident to contact state police at Huntingdon at 627-3161 and ask for Trooper Cory Kylor, the investigating officer in this incident.
Gilliland also informed council that fire company members have also observed damage to the fire pits on the carnival grounds owned by the fire company in Rockhill Borough.
In other business, council member Stephen Scott brought up the possibility of amending the borough’s no-burning ordinance to allow for fire pits, as they’re increasing in popularity.
“I want to give consideration for them,” he said. “But, I also want to give amendments, so people aren’t having bonfires and burning garbage or plastic in the fire. We also need to lay out the rules so people know that things need to be out at a certain time.”
Gilliland said something like that is a good idea, but he also had some suggestions about enforcing it to ensure safety in the borough.
“If we do it, we need to do it right,” said Gilliland. “Perhaps have a permitting process to make sure it’s built right, and we can get code enforcement and the fire company involved. We could make sure it has a certain construction, make sure they are using proper burning fuel, like wood, and make a stiff penalty for those who violate it.”
Scott asked borough secretary Cindi McGarvey to research other burning ordinances from other municipalities that allow for fire pits to have a blueprint to amend the borough’s burning ordinance to allow for them with stipulations.
The borough’s street paving project for Water Street is expected to begin in July. The borough originally approved the $64,000 project last summer, but contractor New Enterprise Stone & Lime Co. was unable to get to the work last year.
Additionally, the borough plans to investigate some trees that may need to be cut that are potential hazards.