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5 people injured after Amtrak Keystone strikes tractor (5/5/18)


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#21 fairviewroad

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 04:29 PM

Access to and from this farm, however, does not appear to be entirely limited to that crossing at grade where the collision occurred. 

 

You're correct, there appears to be a good-quality gravel farm lane that goes south from the farm to Newcomer Road. Of course, this results in a rather circuitous route for the farmer to get to/from Mount Joy, as well as other major highways. The grade crossing exists for the farmer's convenience but does not appear to be necessary to actually access the property.

 

If DA's information about liability is correct, I suspect we may see that grade crossing closed. OTOH, the fact that so few people were injured (ultimately that's a GOOD thing, of course) may mean that this isn't the game-changing incident it could have been. Unfortunately, it may take a true tragedy for this crossing to be closed.



#22 cpotisch

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 08:50 AM

 

Cab cars are in most cases death traps. I personally don't like cab cars for this reason alone.

Sorry, why are they death traps? Is it just that they have less of a crumple zone than most locomotives?

 

Sorry, not to badger ya'll but could someone tell me the main issue with cab cars?


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#23 railiner

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 09:06 AM

 

Cab cars are in most cases death traps. I personally don't like cab cars for this reason alone.

Sorry, why are they death traps? Is it just that they have less of a crumple zone than most locomotives?

 

 

 

 

 

Cab cars are in most cases death traps. I personally don't like cab cars for this reason alone.

Sorry, why are they death traps? Is it just that they have less of a crumple zone than most locomotives?

 

Sorry, not to badger ya'll but could someone tell me the main issue with cab cars?

 

You already guessed the answer... ;)


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#24 niemi24s

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 10:09 AM

One possible solution might be for Amtrak to self-impose a speed limit in this area which would allow sufficient time for the engineer to recognize and react to a track blockage.  Most Keystone Service trains stop at Mount Joy located 1.52 miles West of the collision site anyway, but this particular train (648) isn't scheduled to stop there (not their or they're).  Because of that it was probably travelling fairly fast.

 

But there's probably at least a dozen reason why Amtrak shouldn't, couldn't or wouldn't do such a thing.  


Edited by niemi24s, 08 June 2018 - 10:10 AM.


#25 MikefromCrete

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 10:11 AM

Given that the farmer will probably be much more cautious in the future, I don't think this crossing is a big problem. For all we know, this may have been the first time there was even an accident at this site. 


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#26 OlympianHiawatha

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 05:14 PM

If folks had common sense there would be very few if any grade crossing accidents as the presence of railroad tracks should automatically alert the senses to STOP, LOOK and LISTEN!  But, of course, many people completely lack such common sense!



#27 Lonestar648

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 07:08 PM

When the original HS plan was implemented, a solution to this private crossing should have been built at that time.  This should have been an obstetrical to permitting 110 mph.



#28 Mystic River Dragon

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 11:12 AM

From the original post:

 

"While everyone was discussing yogurt and boxed lunches, this occurred."

 

I am one of the most guilty of discussing what in comparison is frivolous, but it's taken me a while to process this and post about it. I love the Keystone, I love that part of Pennsylvania, I love the farms, the river, the gentle mountains along the route....Taking a Keystone train through Lancaster County has always been a special treat for me, a local trip that can be done on a whim, a comfortable ride almost as nice as sitting in my own living room, only with much better scenery. And the calmness of the animals, the mothers coming out with their chlldren to wave at the train, the sheer peacefulness. And I love the cab cars....I did not realize how fragile they were.

 

So it did upset me...just took me a while to face the fact that things can happen anywhere, even on a favorite local route that always seems peaceful and beautifully uneventful. I am just thankful that the injuries were not worse and hope that the farmer and the passengers all are completely okay now.


Edited by Mystic River Dragon, 09 June 2018 - 11:29 AM.

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#29 Acela150

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 08:32 PM

Folks I'm pretty sure that the Private Grade crossing has been there for years. Maybe even before the Main Line existed. And has anyone heard of accidents at this crossing before such? No. You're all wasting your breath saying it should be closed. Trains blow the whistle in accordance with the FRA laws for said crossing. Crossing accidents happen every what is it? 3 hours or so? So why not close those down too.. Oh wait.. Get over it people this is just part of railroad operations. 


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#30 Thirdrail7

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 08:53 PM

Folks I'm pretty sure that the Private Grade crossing has been there for years. Maybe even before the Main Line existed. And has anyone heard of accidents at this crossing before such? No. You're all wasting your breath saying it should be closed. Trains blow the whistle in accordance with the FRA laws for said crossing. Crossing accidents happen every what is it? 3 hours or so? So why not close those down too.. Oh wait.. Get over it people this is just part of railroad operations. 

 

I think you're missing the point. While I have heard this crossing predates the line (and it required to exist as part of the agreement to run the train), the speeds have dramatically increased on this line. 

 

Having an unmarked, private crossing without gates in 110mph territory should have raised eyebrows. It probably did. Now, an incident has occurred, and once again a major bullet was dodged. I saw the INTERIOR pictures. Imagine if that cab car had been packed to the gills.

 

This wasn't a 20 mph freight train coming down the track, that shrugged off a car. This was a train being quietly shoved at 110mph. As such, that cab car will now be scrapped. There is damage to other cars as well. 

 

We don't say "well there's no need for traffic lights at intersections because there is a car accident every few seconds."


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#31 Lonestar648

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 10:30 PM

There has to be some responsibility by the crossing owner.  They have the responsibility to train their people and themselves about using the crossing safely, about how quickly a 110 mph train comes upon you.  About how quickly you can be totally across, cab and trailer if a truck



#32 Devil's Advocate

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 10:54 PM

Folks I'm pretty sure that the Private Grade crossing has been there for years. Maybe even before the Main Line existed. And has anyone heard of accidents at this crossing before such? No. You're all wasting your breath saying it should be closed. Trains blow the whistle in accordance with the FRA laws for said crossing. Crossing accidents happen every what is it? 3 hours or so? So why not close those down too.. Oh wait.. Get over it people this is just part of railroad operations. 

 

Rather than casually admonish everyone for not "getting over it" why don't you tell us what the FRA's formal rule is for private crossing horn usage?


Edited by Devil's Advocate, 11 June 2018 - 09:22 AM.

.


#33 cpotisch

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 09:14 AM

We don't say "well there's no need for traffic lights at intersections because there is a car accident every few seconds."

While this doesn't apply in this context, it turns out there actually is something to be said for getting rid of traffic lights:

http://thecityfix.co...low-and-safety/

https://www.theguard...cidents-drivers


Edited by cpotisch, 11 June 2018 - 09:16 AM.

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#34 railiner

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 12:30 PM

 

We don't say "well there's no need for traffic lights at intersections because there is a car accident every few seconds."

While this doesn't apply in this context, it turns out there actually is something to be said for getting rid of traffic lights:

http://thecityfix.co...low-and-safety/

https://www.theguard...cidents-drivers

 

Interesting...I have also read about the old fashioned traffic circles, or 'rotaries' as they are known in some parts, making a comeback for the same reasons....


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#35 west point

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 07:05 PM

Are we to understand that until this crossing is closed and sealed 125 MPH operation will not be allowed on this route by the FRA ?   What are the present and future plans by Penn DOT for 125 operation to be implemented ?



#36 jis

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:42 PM

Are we to understand that until this crossing is closed and sealed 125 MPH operation will not be allowed on this route by the FRA ?   What are the present and future plans by Penn DOT for 125 operation to be implemented ?

I haven’t seen or heard of any such plans. Not clear that there is a positive cost-benefit case for such given the extremely curvaceous nature of substantial segments of the route.
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#37 fairviewroad

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 10:58 AM

 

Are we to understand that until this crossing is closed and sealed 125 MPH operation will not be allowed on this route by the FRA ?   What are the present and future plans by Penn DOT for 125 operation to be implemented ?

I haven’t seen or heard of any such plans. Not clear that there is a positive cost-benefit case for such given the extremely curvaceous nature of substantial segments of the route.

 

 

Not to mention the frequent stops. And ultimately, this is a route that competes with private autos, not air travel. Getting from 110 to 125 won't make a whole lot of difference in terms of its attractiveness.


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