Skip to comments.Straightening of curve at Amtrak derailment site in Dupont had not been state priority
Posted on 01/03/2018 9:20:33 PM PST by massmike
The curve where Amtrak Cascades 501 derailed Dec. 18, killing three people, was identified years ago as an obstacle to Washington states dream of creating high-speed rail. The corridor between Lakewood and Nisqually includes unsuitable sharp curvature, said the states long-range plan, written in 2006. A new connection, largely on structure because of differences in elevation, with a speed limit of one hundred mph will be required.
Even with $800 million in Obama administration stimulus money, Washington state didnt rebuild it.
The states stimulus contracts, released through a public-records request, show the state made no promises to change the curve, nor did it promise to create a 100-mph corridor.
Bruce Agnew, director of the Cascadia Center think tank, recalls the state talking about very tough negotiations in 2008 and 2009, over where to spend stimulus funds, involving BNSF Railway and the Federal Railroad Administration.
Officials werent going to spend money to straighten the curve if that drained money for the new Tacoma-Lakewood bypass. This is their centerpiece, Agnew said.
(Excerpt) Read more at seattletimes.com ...
Typical government that con do nothing until a crisis occurs and citizens die!!!
Just guessing but I suspect that “straightening” that curve would have been nearly as expensive as the rest of entire project.
Wouldn’t have needed to straighten out the track for $415 million if they hired people who could stand a proper watch
After the accident, I went to Google Earth and looked at that curve. I couldnt believe that a line with two long straight high-speed sections, one on each side of the freeway, required trains to transit through two very tight turns in quick succession before continuing back to full speed. Its a really stupid layout that was truly designed to fail.
According to what I have read anyway.....
Wonder how old the right of way is.
Youre right, of course, but that doesnt excuse the extremely poor design. Putting a very slow speed section in the middle of a long high-speed stretch is just asking for trouble if the engineer loses situational awareness.
Put the tracks UNDER the road.
That way if the train can't make the curve it doesn't fall on top of the crowded roadway - it just runs off into the woods.
(my cut and paste is a little crude but you get the idea)
More people killed by trains than planes with less than 10% of the passengers.
My area of expertise is aviation, and in that field there are numerous safety margins built into everything precisely so that safety doesnt depend upon the humans in the system having to be perfect. The same general principle applies to any type of transportation. I certainly blame the engineer, but I disagree that the deficiencies end there.
I notice they still haven’t named the engineer who caused the crash.
But I've been doing it since 89-90....I know a couple things.
We have Standard Operating Procedure........
Certain things happen..we do CPR by the book...And certain emergent things happen...we do them by the book.
Sometimes circumstances warrant deviating from the books.....as things are not always the same. And I've done things...not by the book....
The Engineer should have known the route and the track speeds on that route.
He or she screwed up............
Seems a good use of Obama stimulus funds to me.
Just saw, he realized he was going too fast six seconds before the crash and applied the brakes. Hit the 30 mph curve at 79 mph instead of 80 mph. In another earlier article I read that this was being used as a "training run", and I've see other mention that there was a "conductor" ( or i.e. other personnel ) in the cab at the time of the crash.
From my POV, I blame the unions. Not them directly, but the whole system that has derived from the deferral to them, which denies the RR company autonomy over the operation the RR.
So, I'm thinking that the RR could never even think of laying down special rules for this unique inaugural run, and in fact did not, so that things proceeded according to entrenched protocol, which led to these incompetent boobs in the cab twiddling their thumbs while they charged into oblivion.
I blame the Engineer...for not knowing the speed limits on the track ahead of him or her...
And I'd bet millions went into waiting hands.....
You might as well put a monkey in the cab, and then when the monkey crashes the train, say that well, it was the monkey’s fault. See what I’m saying? In my eyes, that’s what this amounts to.
Yeah...and what will happen to the monkey?
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