Thursday, May 14, 2015

Train in vain

You can complain all you'd like about infrastructure, but what happened in Philadelphia on Tuesday night was something different:
The Amtrak train that crashed in Philadelphia, killing at least seven people, was hurtling at 106 mph before it ran off the rails along a sharp curve where the speed limit drops to just 50 mph, federal investigators said Wednesday.

The engineer applied the emergency brakes moments before the crash but slowed the train to only 102 mph by the time the locomotive's black box stopped recording data, said Robert Sumwalt, of the National Transportation Safety Board. The speed limit just before the bend is 80 mph, he said.

The engineer, whose name was not released, refused to give a statement to law enforcement and left a police precinct with a lawyer, police said. Sumwalt said federal accident investigators want to talk to him but will give him a day or two to recover from the shock of the accident.
106 mph? Seriously? I don't know if the engineer was not paying attention, or if there was a catastrophic equipment malfunction, but there's no way in hell that a passenger train should be traveling through a city at 106 mph. I'll refrain from further commentary until we know more, though.

1 comment:

Bike Bubba said...

I believe there are at least a few other recent tragedies, including a case in Spain, where excessive speed around a curve led to tragedy. I'm guessing that there is a "Mussolini effect" of harsh punishments for the trains not running on time that is driving this behavior.