I never got around to reading that series in the summer when it was first published, but I am reading it now (about 1/2 way done) and I hate to say it, im not terribly surprised, or shocked. Instead, I think its more stunning to me, everything I could imagine the railroad doing, but never thought they would do, they DID do.......
In all honesty, Im glad I work for NJT.......it has its problems, and many of them, but from what I have observed from working out on NJT for several years now, is that especially crossing malfunctions are taken VERY seriously, and promptly repaired, and Form D's issued to all the trains approaching it. Not to say that crossings don't malfunction, just last week, we saw a very busy crossing with lights on, and one gate down, but the other was stuck up. We proptly reported it to the dispatcher, and within a few minutes heard him giving a form D to a train behind us.
The whole Times series is most definately an award winner, and deserves teh Pulitizer Prize it won - for the public to get a peek at the railroad management mentality is priceless, and its disregard to many important issues should be closely examined.
As a side note, the profession of "Railroad Claims Agent" is the lowest, scummyist, bile and most degrading job a human being can have. And I think the quotes from the series show that very well.
On the RR, "believe nothing you hear and only half of what you see"
John, aka "JTGSHU" passed away on August 26, 2013. We honor his memory and his devotion to railroading at railroad.net.