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Author Topic: Huge fire after truck and train collide, Texas USA.  (Read 511 times)
broadgage
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« on: March 04, 2021, 08:05:59 pm »

Reports state and video shows huge fire after collision, rail tank wagon was carrying petrol.
No serious injuries reported.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-56117353

Edited to correct link.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2021, 08:37:12 pm by broadgage » Logged

A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
ChrisB
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« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2021, 08:10:40 pm »

Have you used the correct URL there - that's a truck sliding off a road and no fire?
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broadgage
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« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2021, 08:39:02 pm »

Have you used the correct URL there - that's a truck sliding off a road and no fire?

No it was the wrong link, about an unrelated incident.
Now corrected. Sorry to spread confusion.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
grahame
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« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2021, 09:20:00 am »

From the Web Socialist Web Site - stats on USA train safety triggered (earlier in the article, not quoted) by two more incidents.

Quote
According to the US Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration, there were 21,061 accidents involving BNSF between 1996—when BNSF was established by the merging of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway and Burlington Northern Railroad—and 2020.

Over the last 25 years, BNSF has been involved in 3,102 fatalities, including 82 employee-on-duty deaths, and 25,031 other injuries, involving a staggering 15,903 employees.

When all other American rail companies are included, the total number of accidents jumps to 126,420 between 1996 and 2020, with 21,148 fatalities and 236,329 injuries, including 492 employee deaths and 136,464 employee injuries.

The number of accidents, fatalities, and injuries in the US compared to the total amount of rail miles traveled exceeds those of most other highly industrialized nations. While there undoubtedly are several factors that have led to this carnage, a determining cause has been the deregulation of the rail industry coupled with a lack of extensive rail modernization and investment in safety protocols.

Big country, higher numbers expected that in smaller ones ... but even taking that into account, the figures are really bad
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eightonedee
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« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2021, 06:57:05 pm »

At the risk of showing a ghoulish interest in the figures in this article, they beg a number of questions.

The most striking is the number of non-employee fatalities - of the 3,102 fatalities in 25 years for this company 3020 are non-employees, and of the 21,148 fatalities on the US rail system 20,656 were non-employees. What is happening? It does not seem to be primarily an employment issue (although the number of employee victims at about 20 a year for the whole US is not good - the UK (United Kingdom) seems to be about 2 to 3 a year on average).

From the ORR» (Office of Rail and Road formerly Office of Rail Regulation - about) website, sadly suicides are the largest proportion of deaths on the UK rail system, at between 200-300 a year. This is a terrible toll, not only for the families of the deceased but the employees and emergency services involved in the incidents and their aftermaths. Does this though account for the lion's share of the US figures too?

A visit to the following web address - https://www.bts.gov/content/transportation-fatalities-mode indicates that most fatalities are crossing deaths (showing a reduction form about 500 a year to 2-300 later on, but with the improvement stalled in recent years) and trespassers (a steady 400-500 a year).

This doesn't quite fit the WSWS agenda, does it?
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stuving
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« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2021, 08:19:14 pm »

The BTS refer to the FRA (http://safetydata.fra.dot.gov/OfficeofSafety/) for more detail, but I'm struggling to get much sense out of there. It's as bad as the Belgian State Archives, which I was grappling with earlier today (though at least it's all in one language). The closest I can find is a database query that gives detailed tables, but only per year rather than aggregated. But certainly the numbers are dominated by grade crossings and trespassers/suicides, outweighing employees by about 100:1.
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Bmblbzzz
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« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2021, 10:19:17 pm »

Just speculating really, but might the American statistics be as much a road safety problem as a rail safety one? Certainly Youtube is full of videos (some cautionary, some dramatic, some ghoulish) of cars and trucks crashing into trains on American crossings. While some of them might be due to faulty signals and/or barriers, a lot of them show drivers ignoring the signals. American driving tests in many states are rather undemanding by UK (United Kingdom) or European standards and their HGVs in particular are designed in a way that doesn't facilitate vision. Plus, the way in which US trains mostly go over crossings very slowly, blowing their horns, might lull road users into a false sense of security when it comes to the few trains which go faster – as well as for those which are going slowly (because "look, it's so slow, even though the barriers are down there's still time to cross..."). And the lack of fencing might be a factor when it comes to trespassers.
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