Discussion relating to the operations of MTA MetroNorth Railroad including west of Hudson operations and discussion of CtDOT sponsored rail operations such as Shore Line East and the Springfield to New Haven Hartford Line

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, nomis, FL9AC, Jeff Smith

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  by CTRailfan
 
Signaling is irrelevant. This wasn't signal-related, nor could the most advanced signal system in the world help.

There are all sort of things that could cause a rail to crack or break, like fatigue, bad material, etc.
  by Clean Cab
 
It bugs me that they didn't offer any help. I found it somewhat amusing that they carried their skateboards with them the whole time.
  by AEM7AC920
 
Actually I would say your incorrect on whether signaling is "irreverent." The signal system may not have been the cause of the crash however depending how severe the damage or break to the rail was, your signals should of went to a restricting.
  by DutchRailnut
 
If the rail broke under train, it would not trip any signal.
  by RearOfSignal
 
Clean Cab wrote:It bugs me that they didn't offer any help.
Neither did Herbert Morrison!
  by DogBert
 
Few people jump into action, while most others just assume it's someone else's job to help or are too shocked or confused by what is happening. So don't begrudge them too much. It's simple bystander effect.
  by AEM7AC920
 
Correct however I haven't seen any official word to how or when the rail broke so I just threw that out.
  by freightguy
 
I agree. With today's youth I'm shocked they didn't jump onto the train. The passengers seem somewhat calm. No one screaming or flipping out. Certainly an intense scene. A lot more to follow with this one.
  by DutchRailnut
 
Actually kids were smart, a derailed train in electrified territory can be a death trap, as it loses its negative (ground) and could be alive with 12.5 Kv.
  by PRRTechFan
 
DutchRailnut wrote:
If the rail broke under train, it would not trip any signal.
...and if the break occurred exactly at an insulated joint between signal block sections, there is the possibility that the signal system might not detect it.
  by Tommy Meehan
 
Yes I thought they were well-advised not to try and play first-responder. Leave that to the people who are trained to do it.
  by krispy
 
The LIRR had a break recently and due to the bonding still holding on the next train ran over it at MAS. Fortunately it was an equipment move and no one was seriously hurt. It took them a week to clean that one up too. Sometimes things happen no matter what safeguards you have in place.
  by Clean Cab
 
I can't say how I'd react to such a horrific scene such as these kids experienced. But if it were me, I think I'd have offered to help evacuate people from the train until EMS, fire or police arrived. I am surprised that these kids do remain quite calm despite what they're witnessing. I'm sure they'll all get their 15 minutes of fame for capturing some pretty historic footage.
  by CTRailfan
 
Trainlawyer wrote:I am going to give the young gentlemen two out of a possible three 'Attaboys' and forgive the language despite its excesses. (I can recall a Deputy Secretary of Defense using a similar expletive in similar circumstances and despite it being most unladylike it was thoroughly appropriate.)
1. Real time unedited video which the various investigators can access.
2. Not running headlong into possible danger zone and only making it worse.
3. (Not Given) From the video it looks as though what aid they could have given was minimal and the video may be more valuable.
GME
Agreed. Not only could it provide value to investigators, but it is fantastic citizen journalism (even if it doesn't meet any journalistic standard per se) that helps people to understand what happened when MN and NTSB have created an information vacuum.
  by CTRailfan
 
DutchRailnut wrote:If the rail broke under train, it would not trip any signal.
Yeah, exactly. The only way a signal system could pick it up was if it has broken under the previous train, but not derailed it, but in this case, a good portion of the train went over it before it derailed. That, and they were extremely unlucky that they happened to have a train passing them right at that moment. Another minute and the other train would have had time to hear the derailment on the radio and slam the brakes on.
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