Tagged: FAILED PRESIDENCY
December 18, 2017 at 7:33 pm #33802
Seriously, his stupid tweets are so expected now that they fail to surprise…December 19, 2017 at 1:31 pm #33810
I’m not surprised anymore by Trump’s tweets.
What’s sad, is how preventable this accident could have been, now that information coming out about how fast the train was going at the time of the accident has been made public.December 19, 2017 at 1:56 pm #33811
Not necessarily. the speed limit was 79 mph just before the curve 30 mph limit. Until the investigation is done it is unclear exactly how preventable the accident actually was.
Yes, sad indeed, for those that lost lives, their families and friends. It will make it that much more difficult for high speed rail to blossom.
Signalling malfunction? Human error on the train? Other human error? And what was on the tracks blocking the train? Too many unanswered questions remain.December 19, 2017 at 2:27 pm #33812
1. Who was at the throttle?
2. What is his history?
3. What is his physical condition?
4. Was he interviewed by authorities immediately after crash?
5. Was he tested for meds/alcohol?
6. Did he possess a cell phone? Records?December 19, 2017 at 4:34 pm #33813
Exactly, Andy. I shouldn’t jump to the conclusion I did. I know they are checking on some kind of automated system that slows a train down for certain curves as part of the investigation.
I was on the Bullet Train in Japan many years ago. That was wickedly wild. Especially, when another Bullet Train smokes by you at the same speed going the other direction…and nearly knocks you off your feet when you, unknowingly, are look out the window…or in my case, had my young face up against the window, when the other train passed.
Is high speed rail service really worth it in our area…I mean…we live in such a wonderful part of the world…why do we need to go so damn fast. I know driving to Seattle has become almost a reluctance due to their traffic problems. But is a high speed train the answer or not?December 19, 2017 at 6:32 pm #33814
It’s sad when we consider an 80mph train “fast”.
Having said that, I looked online at Google maps and see that the line being used as the “new” line is an old freight line that is a joke. It goes directly thru the center of Lynwood downtown at grade level … so while this accident could have been avoided no doubt I cannot understand how ANY of this route could be rated at 80mph.
What a joke. Recycle an old single track freight right of way and call it a high speed passenger rail improvement.December 20, 2017 at 5:23 pm #33822
Yes, it is an old freight route, but the tracks were completely rebuilt, supposedly to handle higher speeds. (Btw, it is Lakewood, not Lynwood). Obviously there were serious issues on this inaugural run and it is beyond me how the crew wasn’t able to correct the speed issue. Sometimes when there is pressure to make sure a transportation project goes perfectly, they are perhaps looking at the end result rather than the journey. Bad look for Sound Transit, WSDOT, and Amtrak.December 20, 2017 at 5:31 pm #33823
Radiogeek, your “joke” shaved 6 miles off the route, and eased congestion with freight traffic. The train unit itself was bought by the Washington Dept of transportation. I’ve a hunch they didn’t go into this Willy nilly.
I do believe we’ll find that the operator was distracted. Inaugural run and all.December 20, 2017 at 7:01 pm #33824
Skep, the joke is that the improvement was oversold.
Both the old route and the new route are single track freight lines without grade separation. Just in downtown Lakewood there are seven crossings!
I’ve ridden the old line, and the old route was a slow choke point although beautiful and a highlight of the trip. So perhaps by doing a minimal upgrade to this (new) old freight track it could be legally carrying passengers, but the speed can’t be 80 anywhere on this new route section. 80 is fine from south of there thru Kelso on the double track, grade separated part of the line. To say this would shave time off the entire route is the joke. The real question for me is why in the hell was the train doing 80 at all? Forget slowing for this one curve, the entire section of new route ain’t safe that fast and that it was doing 80 at all is questionable. Take the challenge, look at a map. Part of this includes the ancient right of way that goes in front of Camp Lewis, where I haven’t seen a train move my entire life.
If BNSF can manage the freight on the old line and the Sounder folks keep Amtrak on their tracks, it’s still a small improvement but nowhere near what it is hyped to be. For the money spent, yes. A joke. Just like all USA rail which is really sad. I really wish we would build reliable rail service.December 20, 2017 at 7:42 pm #33826
Yes, the is at the end of the day a boondoggle. If the 6 minute advantage is worth the investment of many millions of dollars, then it is a waste. And this accident will set the entire project back to make it impossible to recoup the losses for many years. Someone, or some organization royally screwed up here. Lawsuits are being filed as I write this. But guess what? Who pays for this f-up? Yep. Us.December 21, 2017 at 4:27 pm #33834
Alright geek, I’ll yield to your expertise. But it’s not the six minutes that is the key, it’s the fact we’ve more spots to bypass freight. The expansion in Kalama is helping, too.
As for the crash, again, why anyone took it up to 80 on a “new” old section boggles the mind. Again, the operator was distracted is the most likely reason.December 21, 2017 at 4:47 pm #33835
Skep, agreed that it’s good that there is another set of tracks qualified for passenger traffic and that will help relive congestion. If appropriate speed limits are put in place for the new (old) bypass, then the travel time will be about the same but there will be fewer times that the train has to completely stop and be totally off schedule.
Everything costs way too much these days, and I don’t have the info to understand well if we taxpayers got our money’s worth on this project. As some was minor improvement to the track and right of way, and some was rolling stock … hard to know.December 21, 2017 at 7:43 pm #33836
Trains are a 19th century technology. While I believe trains still provide a viable solution to moving goods, trains suck at moving humans.
As for the accident, someone fucked up big time.December 21, 2017 at 8:45 pm #33839
“Trains are a 19th century technology.”
So are airplanes. Bullet trains and jets are hardly “19th” century creations, though. Commercial jet service is only 60 years old (1957). High speed trains, although dating to the late 1890’s, didn’t reach triple digit mph speeds until about 85 years ago.
Both have made significant advancements over the last 100+ years in moving people and freight faster, safer and more efficiently (fuel/weight).
“someone fucked up big time.”
I think when the results come in next year, there will be more then “one” person responsible.
“trains suck at moving humans.”
You’ll have to elaborate because the numbers say otherwise. Clearly, rail provides the kind of comfort unavailable in a bus or car not to mention you can take in the scenery, relax with food and drink, and go places you can’t get to by plane.
Accidents happen. Train accidents, like plane crashes, get a lot of attention precisely because they’re so rare. According to a 2013 study by economist Ian Savage, trains are the second-safest mode of transportation in the U.S. Between 2000 and 2009, the number of deaths per billion passenger-miles caused by trains was 0.43. In comparison, the number of deaths caused by cars was 7.3 and the number of deaths caused by motorcycles was a disturbing 213. According to that same study, the number of deaths per billion passenger-miles caused by airplanes is 0.07.
To whomever tagged the thread that drumpf had nothing to do with this, you are sadly mistaken. He is the leader of the G.O.P., so not only is his lack of passing an infrastructure plan a failure of his ( http://nym.ag/2CSdV35 ) but also the previous failures of the G.O.P. are his to own as well. Republicans say nice things about infrastructure but haven’t shown any interest in paying for it. Name your administration and it can be shown how Republicans blocked infrastructure bills in the past. They own it and drumpf is their guy now, so he owns it.December 21, 2017 at 8:57 pm #33841
Agree with most of this, Andy. Trains are safe and they offer a great alternative to highway congestion. Yes, this WA train was totally f-‘d up, but in the overall sense of this transportation mode, they do well. I will continue to support this mode of transportation, especially as autos become self-driving in the next couple of decades.
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