Tadman wrote:This crash resistance thing is crazy. Let's try an exercise:
1. Airbus should make their planes far stronger so when they crash out of the sky at twice the legal operating speed, the passengers survive.
2. Ford should make Explorers much stronger so when they are driven off a bridge at twice the speed limit, the passengers survive.
See how idiotic this looks? Nobody would ever suggest this.
You and I are largely in agreement and have had discussions on this in the past. The key FRA test is that the car should not deform when a load of 800,000 lbs is applied to the ends*. Certainly some standards of buff strength are required to withstand rigors of switching and interchange (if you're delivering your cars by freight rail). This standard** doesn't cover what happens when a car is hit from the side or a car is dropped off an overpass (the passengers will probably hit the ceiling).
This video is from the FRA's own youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZxaARFvCzpE
" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; Look what happens when an FRA car hits. It mirrors what happened at Chatsworth. For years, we were told: European equipment can't run on US rails because US freight trains are much larger than European freight trains, and the FRA's nightmare scenario is a passenger-freight head-on collision. Chatsworth was the nightmare scenario and the passenger loco telescoped into the first coach.
*= actually, it's at the "buff stops" 4 to 6 feet inside the car
**= other standards do cover side sill integrity I believe