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LookingGlassTie

The infamous "11 foot 8 bridge" in Durham, NC

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Have any of you been on either the Carolinian or Piedmont trains and witnessed a truck crash at this bridge? There are numerous YouTube videos which show crashes at the location. The bridge is at the intersection of S. Gregson & Peabody Streets in Durham.

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Those crashes are hilarious. I have never seen amtrak crosswise bridge. A few times a freight.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

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There is more than just signs warning the minimum clearance for that bridge. There is height detection system that triggers a sign warning to turn when an overheight truck approaches. Even if the driver does not know the height of their truck, the system warns them to not try it.

 

In order to protect the bridge, a superstructure was erected next to the bridge to take the impact of overheight collisions. That eliminates the need for Norfolk Southern to come out for an inspection every time some numbskull rips the top off their truck.

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Elevating the railway would be astronomically expensive. There are at-grade crossings to the right of the webcam and the recently opened Amtrak station is not far to the left. NCDOT prepared an estimate of elevating the railway -- which is state-owned, remember -- throughout all of downtown Durham, the so-called "Great Wall of Durham" project, but the City asked that the project not be pursued. The line carries a substantial amount of freight, and NS is not keen on a hump.

 

Digging out the road under the bridge to increase clearance is also problematic because there is a very large sewer just under the asphalt and subgrade.

Edited by xyzzy

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There is more than just signs warning the minimum clearance for that bridge. There is height detection system that triggers a sign warning to turn when an overheight truck approaches. Even if the driver does not know the height of their truck, the system warns them to not try it.

And the traffic light now turns red when the height detector is tripped, which is a more recent improvement to the system. A little hard to believe trucks are still hitting it with all that going on, but they're still keeping that website in business.

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Digging out the road under the bridge to increase clearance is also problematic because there is a very large sewer just under the asphalt and subgrade.

 

One option would be to install a new bypass sewer line to either side of the bridge and connect it to the old sewer beyond the location of a new lowered road alignment. The existing sewer section under the bridge can then be abandoned allowing the road to be lowered.

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The train trestle prominently featured in all the videos here has earned a reputation for its unrelenting enforcement of the laws of physics.

 

^_^

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Its mostly rental trucks with inexperienced drivers.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

I agree....and some are probably following their GPS on unfamiliar routes, and not seeing the low bridge warnings...

Professional driver's will make sure they have a commercial vehicle GPS, and also make sure they look for hazard's, as well...

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It never ceases to amaze me how these drivers can keep doing this. In Spokane the BNSF tracks are elevated through the downtown area and trucks are continually getting stuck under them. Advertisements are painted on some of the bridges and on one of them, the bridge that seems to be the one that has the most problems with truck drivers not paying attention, is an ad for a local jewelry store. Every time a truck gets stuck, pictures of it are plastered all over the news and social media. I have to wonder how much business that jewelry store has had generated by virtue of trucks getting stuck under the bridge that has their ad on it. 😂😂😂

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The problem on the Mississippi Gulf Coast is that every time CSX services the tracks they add an inch or two of ballast, raising the tracks and crossing. Many of our grade-level crossings are now impassible to vehicles with low ground-clearance. Unfortunately, there's no quick and easy formula (e.g. 11'8") to know if you can make it or not and many low-boy trailers get stuck.

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The problem on the Mississippi Gulf Coast is that every time CSX services the tracks they add an inch or two of ballast, raising the tracks and crossing. Many of our grade-level crossings are now impassible to vehicles with low ground-clearance. Unfortunately, there's no quick and easy formula (e.g. 11'8") to know if you can make it or not and many low-boy trailers get stuck.

That is a failure of inter-agency coordination...the railroads and the highway departments....such projects should have their engineer's approve together such changes, so that appropriate 'counter measure's' can be taken to prevent poor crossing geometry...

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Yes, the humps on the roads getting too high is a failure of the state agency that approved the grade crossing work. They should either require the railroad to undercut their track or require more road pavement raising adjacent to the grade crossing.

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Here's a video with a damaged truck below while the Carolinian operates (at restricted speed I suppose) above:

 

 

If the nosy crew member fell, would he have sued Amtrak, the city or the truck driver? :blink:

Edited by Thirdrail7

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Here's a video with a damaged truck below while the Carolinian operates (at restricted speed I suppose) above:

 

 

If the nosy crew member fell, would he have sued Amtrak, the city or the truck driver? :blink:

I had seen that particular truck hit the bridge in other videos, but those videos didn't play long enough for me to see the Amtrak train.

 

That crew member was looking as if to say "WTF????" :P

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Here's a video with a damaged truck below while the Carolinian operates (at restricted speed I suppose) above:

 

 

If the nosy crew member fell, would he have sued Amtrak, the city or the truck driver? :blink:

I would not jump to the conclusion that the crew member was "nosy".....perhaps he was required to observe the passing, to insure the train was not fouled in any way by debris, etc.....

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If you watch the entire video there are two crew members at two different open doors. I️ suspected they were checking to make sure the train could pass safely.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

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