• Cascade Wreck 18 December 17

  • Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.
Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

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  by Tadman
 
MCL1981 wrote:
Gilbert B Norman wrote:But how many who witnessed or learned of that move are going to conclude that rail travel is unsafe and "you'll never catch me on that".
Probably none. Pictures and video of the scene showing way worse damage than that have been out since minutes after the crash. Witness and NTSB statements about events leading up to the crash are already out, including the speed. Seeing that being moved is not telling anyone anything they don't already know.
Both good points. I think that in general, there is a completely missed PR opportunity for Amtrak. According to Northwestern U statistics, cars have 17x more fatalities per million passenger miles than trains. Can you imagine how effective that kind of advertising is, especially in the corridors? Cascade, Midwest, and NEC are all snowy corridors with bad traffic. A TV short of someone texting-driving-drinking coffee on a snowy road contrasted with a passenger enjoying a coffee and ipad in a big comfy biz class seat? Gold.

Additional tagline: "the heat is already on when you get in our cars".
  by Gilbert B Norman
 
Only problem there, Mr. Dunville, is that would be breaking a Cardinal rule of the airline industry. Back in the days when air travel was sold for its glamour appeal such as a faster schedule than the other guy offered (and Barbie Doll Attendants dressed for the part - and called Stewardesses) the ad line read "Why not fly the fastest"?

But you never saw an ad saying "Why not fly the safest"?

Here's a related article about safety bragging:

Boston Globe

Fair Use:
When Donald Trump’s new airline, the Trump Shuttle, launched on a summer day in 1989, tuxedoed waiters with white gloves passed out smoked salmon, honey chicken skewers, and chocolate truffles. It was early in the day, but champagne flowed at Logan Airport.

After a string quartet rested its bows, Trump took the microphone and struck a discordant note: He railed against Pan Am, his rival in the shuttle business. He suggested Pan Am’s flights were unsafe, that the company was strapped for cash and couldn’t spend as much to maintain planes as Trump Shuttle.

“I’m not criticizing Pan Am,” Trump said that day. “I’m just speaking facts.”

Executives at Trump’s newest venture were aghast. In a highly competitive business, one in which Trump had no experience, the new boss had tossed decorum to the wind and made claims he had no evidence to support.

“We said, ‘Donald, don’t ever do that again,’ ” recalled Henry Harteveldt, who was the company’s marketing director. “It was wrong. We had no proof to back that up. And there’s an unwritten rule in the airline business that you don’t attack someone else’s safety record. There but for the grace of God go I.”.
  by OrangeGrove
 
There is a saying which holds that there is no such thing as bad publicity.

It has long been demonstrated that new passenger interest in Amtrak tends to actually rise following a major derailment. The very option of travel by passenger train is such a well kept secret in so many parts of the country that prospective travelers only consider the possibility after hearing about it on the news.
  by Tadman
 
Gilbert B Norman wrote:Only problem there, Mr. Dunville, is that would be breaking a Cardinal rule of the airline industry. Back in the days when air travel was sold for its glamour appeal such as a faster schedule than the other guy offered (and Barbie Doll Attendants dressed for the part - and called Stewardesses) the ad line read "Why not fly the fastest"?

But you never saw an ad saying "Why not fly the safest"?

Here's a related article about safety bragging:

Boston Globe

Fair Use:
When Donald Trump’s new airline, the Trump Shuttle, launched on a summer day in 1989, tuxedoed waiters with white gloves passed out smoked salmon, honey chicken skewers, and chocolate truffles. It was early in the day, but champagne flowed at Logan Airport.

After a string quartet rested its bows, Trump took the microphone and struck a discordant note: He railed against Pan Am, his rival in the shuttle business. He suggested Pan Am’s flights were unsafe, that the company was strapped for cash and couldn’t spend as much to maintain planes as Trump Shuttle.

“I’m not criticizing Pan Am,” Trump said that day. “I’m just speaking facts.”

Executives at Trump’s newest venture were aghast. In a highly competitive business, one in which Trump had no experience, the new boss had tossed decorum to the wind and made claims he had no evidence to support.

“We said, ‘Donald, don’t ever do that again,’ ” recalled Henry Harteveldt, who was the company’s marketing director. “It was wrong. We had no proof to back that up. And there’s an unwritten rule in the airline business that you don’t attack someone else’s safety record. There but for the grace of God go I.”.
The big difference here is that there is very hard and fast evidence by a reputed university study, whereas Mr. Trump evidently didn't have any evidence. Per the below survey, the car has 17x more deaths per billion passenger miles. I would hazard an educated guess that the gap for injuries is even higher.

http://www.cityam.com/215834/one-chart-" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; ... ays-travel

The other big difference is that we're not in the airline industry, we're talking highway versus rail.
  by justalurker66
 
Tadman wrote:Per the below survey, the car has 17x more deaths per billion passenger miles.
So people die on trains? Duly noted.

Every winter my driving habits change. When we have a heavy snow my route to work is via the usually slower crowded main roads because they are more likely to be cleared and they are wide enough that I can get around vehicles that are having a problem. Slide offs on two lane roads are a problem. I avoid limited access roads in winter because I want options. If someone closes the road by wrecking their vehicle I don't want to be stuck on a limited access highway waiting for the gas to run out in my car or for some driver to not see stopped traffic and cause a second wreck. It is all part of staying in control. And I believe the majority of drivers look at accident rates for other people and see them as problems that will happen to other people. I believe only those who have experienced an accident directly or indirectly or have had a close call consider that "it could happen to me".

I can't control the train. Regardless of schedule it operates when someone else moves it. There are few alternate routes when something happens on the tracks. When you get on a train you trust your travel to someone else.

It is human nature. While fatal car accidents happen to other people I have never experienced a fatal accident. So my safety record is infinitely better than Amtrak's.
  by talltim
 
I can see exactly your reasoning, although not logical, it make sense in our brains. Of course the other bit that we find hard to assimilate is that when driving, our lives are not just in our hands, but in the hands of all the other road users too. Even when travelling by train with a (hopefully) highly trained crew, our lives may be in the hands of road users.
  by Gilbert B Norman
 
Progressive Railroading reports on the short, intermediate, and long term corrective actions that Amtrak proposes to avoid further incidents as at DuPont:

Fair Use
Amtrak President and Chief Executive Officer Richard Anderson last week presented a status report to Oregon and Washington state officials on the railroad's plan for responding to last month's deadly derailment of an Amtrak Cascades train near DuPont, Washington.

Among its actions and plans, Amtrak is taking the lead in organizing a meeting of key decision-makers involved in implementing positive train control (PTC) in the area where the derailment occurred, Anderson said in a letter to the states officials. Those decision-makers include Amtrak, Sound Transit, host railroads and the Washington and Oregon departments of transportation.
  by Tadman
 
justalurker66 wrote:
Tadman wrote:Per the below survey, the car has 17x more deaths per billion passenger miles.
So people die on trains? Duly noted.

Every winter my driving habits change. When we have a heavy snow my route to work is via the usually slower crowded main roads because they are more likely to be cleared and they are wide enough that I can get around vehicles that are having a problem. Slide offs on two lane roads are a problem. I avoid limited access roads in winter because I want options. If someone closes the road by wrecking their vehicle I don't want to be stuck on a limited access highway waiting for the gas to run out in my car or for some driver to not see stopped traffic and cause a second wreck. It is all part of staying in control. And I believe the majority of drivers look at accident rates for other people and see them as problems that will happen to other people. I believe only those who have experienced an accident directly or indirectly or have had a close call consider that "it could happen to me".

I can't control the train. Regardless of schedule it operates when someone else moves it. There are few alternate routes when something happens on the tracks. When you get on a train you trust your travel to someone else.

It is human nature. While fatal car accidents happen to other people I have never experienced a fatal accident. So my safety record is infinitely better than Amtrak's.
You (and at for years I as well) were in an area where people learned to drive in snow - the lake effect belt east of Lake Michigan. You'd be surprised how bad drivers are when it snows south of Rochester or west of Indiana. Bottom line, the statistics indicate that not enough drivers are doing something right, or the statistics would be better.
  by aczlan0
 
litz wrote:You can see from the rig, they were using dump trucks for braking control ... the load was too much for mere regular trucks.
Minor point of correction, they were using 2 and 3 axle semi tractors with weights on them, not dump trucks. The front truck had a weight box on the trailer frame above the 5th wheel kingpin and the rear truck had weights chained to the frame in front of the 5th wheel plate.
Screenshots from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xM77QLL1A4U" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Front Truck(5:27)
FrontTruck.PNG
Rear Truck (6:03):
RearTruck.PNG
Aaron Z
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
  by AgentSkelly
 
I'm a tow truck driver, while I have never towed a entire train set (ha), I know of some heavy hauler class A drivers who have; surprisingly, these kind of moves happen at least once a day at short distances as I have been told. And yes, the family firm had to put together a jig in this case, but apparently there is some firms in Montana that have full roadway flatbeds ready to go for this purpose.

I'm also glad to see Amtrak and all parties involved are having a meeting to figure out how to move forward instead of backward.
  by dowlingm
 
Gilbert B Norman wrote:Boston Globe

Fair Use:
When Donald Trump’s new airline, the Trump Shuttle, launched on a summer day in 1989, tuxedoed waiters with white gloves passed out smoked salmon, honey chicken skewers, and chocolate truffles. It was early in the day, but champagne flowed at Logan Airport.

After a string quartet rested its bows, Trump took the microphone and struck a discordant note: He railed against Pan Am, his rival in the shuttle business. He suggested Pan Am’s flights were unsafe, that the company was strapped for cash and couldn’t spend as much to maintain planes as Trump Shuttle.

“I’m not criticizing Pan Am,” Trump said that day. “I’m just speaking facts.”

Executives at Trump’s newest venture were aghast. In a highly competitive business, one in which Trump had no experience, the new boss had tossed decorum to the wind and made claims he had no evidence to support.

“We said, ‘Donald, don’t ever do that again,’ ” recalled Henry Harteveldt, who was the company’s marketing director. “It was wrong. We had no proof to back that up. And there’s an unwritten rule in the airline business that you don’t attack someone else’s safety record. There but for the grace of God go I.”.
And of course a "Trump" plane did do an off course excursion at La Guardia (with Pence aboard) during the campaign! https://www.pprune.org/north-america/58 ... y-lga.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
  by east point
 
Heavy haulers have problems at times. Was on the Florida turnpike. A HH was transporting approximately a 300 foot highway bridge beam. The rear bogie with ten axels collapsed at the middle attach point/ That left only axels 5 & 6 touching highway and other axels flopping in the air. How that bogie was replaced one has to wonder ? ?
  by aczlan0
 
Big jacks and/or a large crane to pick it up so they can slide the broken out out and slide a new one in.
Here are some airbags that lift 112 tons each up to 20" in the air (for the V102 bags): http://www.vetter-rescue.com/lifting-bags.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Aaron Z
  by Tadman
 
Without editorializing too much on the cause of the crash, a clearer picture is starting to emerge. My sincere hope is that Mr. Moorman, as former CEO of the railroad that literally broke the Harriman Award for safety, will take some time to address the prevailing culture of safety at Amtrak.
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