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GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. -- The Chestnut Creek community just outside Norcross is picture perfect.

It's the sound that's the problem.

The community sits along a rail line off the Buford Highway industrial corridor, and at any given time during the day or night, the residents are subjected to a decibel busting din from the trains and the work to maintain them.

Indeed, it is not so much the traffic from the trains as it is the heavy metal clash of the cars being uncoupled and parked in the wee hours of the morning.

Neighbors shared recordings they made overnight recently as Norfolk Southern trains and crews went about their loud work just feet from an entire sleeping subdivision.

They described the commotion variably as sounding like bombs going off or thunder, adding that they are literally being held hostage by noise loud enough to shake the fillings in their teeth.

They say Gwinnett County's not doing enough to help abate the problem, and that they would like to see sound buffering walls built between them and the tracks.

Right now, there's just a thin line of young trees that offers little protection.

The subdivision is also full of kids who can't get a good night's sleep with the racket. Our decibel meter maxed out at 100 when we measured the noise from the trains during the day. That's the equivalent of a power lawn mower. Residents say it's much louder at night.

A Norfolk Southern spokeswoman said the company is looking into the complaints and is still gathering information. Gwinnett police say there is an open case with code enforcement about the noise.

But the community frets that the investigation will be tedious and time consuming. They say similar complaints have been made for years with no resolution.

In the meantime, at least one resident we spoke to said her family was in the process of moving because of the loud bursts of screeching metal outside her bedroom window. She, like many others, said that they had been misled to believe that the tracks were inactive when they purchased their homes years ago.And now, every night as they struggle to sleep, they are reminded of just how wrong that claim was.

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