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capriceman

tragic LA train wreck

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http://freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID...NEWS07/80913011

kinda overshadowed by Ike.

LOS ANGELES-- Emergency crews found more victims early today, boosting the death toll to 17, as they delicately picked apart the mangled wreckage of a commuter train that collided head-on with a freight train on the same track.

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More victims were feared trapped in the wrecked Metrolink commuter train. About 135 people were injured.

The impact rammed the Metrolink engine backward into a passenger car, which rested on its side with the engine still inside it early today, and accordioned the freight train cars. Two other Metrolink cars remained upright. Crews had to put out a fire under part of the train.

During the night, the teams used hydraulic jacks to keep the passenger car from falling over and other specialized rescue equipment to gently tear apart the metal.

Fire Capt. Steve Ruda said the goal was to eliminate every piece of metal and gradually work down into the passenger spaces, but by midnight crews were just getting through the top deck of the double-decker train.

"There's so much damage, we need to wait for heavier equipment," Ruda said early today.

Officials say there were 222 people on the Metrolink train and four Union Pacific employees aboard the freight train.

The cause of the collision had not been determined.

"This is the worst accident I've ever seen," Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said. "Clearly the injuries are going to mount and so are the fatalities."

Asked how the two trains ended up on the same track, Steven Kulm, a spokesman for the Federal Railroad Administration: "We are nowhere near having any information on that."

Kulm said the federal investigation will be headed by the National Transportation Safety Board, while his agency will conduct a review of whether any federal rail safety regulations were violated.

Union Pacific spokeswoman Zoe Richmond said it is common in California for freight and commuter trains to be on one track.

"You see it a lot in California where commuter trains share tracks with freight trains," Richmond said, adding she couldn't speculate about the cause of the crash.

Dr. Marc Eckstein, medical director for the city Fire Department, said 135 people were taken to hospitals — about 85 of them in serious or critical condition.

In the initial hours after the disaster, firefighters treated the injured at three triage areas near the wreck, and helicopters flew in and out of a nearby landing area on evacuation flights. Dazed and injured passengers sat on the ground and wandered about.

Leslie Burnstein saw the crash from her home and heard screams of agony as she ran through a haze of smoke toward the wreckage. She pulled victims out one by one.

"It was horrendous," said Burnstein, a psychologist. "Blood was everywhere. ... I heard people yelling, screaming in pain, begging for help."

Metrolink spokeswoman Denise Tyrrell said the Metrolink train left Union Station in downtown Los Angeles and was headed northwest to Moorpark in Ventura County. The trains collided at about 4:30 p.m. in the Chatsworth area of the San Fernando Valley, near a 500-foot-long tunnel underneath Stoney Point Park.

On the north side of the tunnel, there is a siding, a length of track where one train can wait for another to pass, Tyrrell said.

"I do not know what caused the wreck," said Tyrrell who broke down crying and was shaking. "Obviously two trains are not supposed to be on the same track at the same time."

Until Friday, the worst disaster in Metrolink's history occurred on Jan. 26, 2005, in suburban Glendale when a man parked a gasoline-soaked SUV on railroad tracks. A Metrolink train struck the SUV and derailed, striking another Metrolink train traveling the other way, killing 11 people and injuring about 180 others. Juan Alvarez was convicted this year of murder for causing the crash.

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we so need to let the train system get upgraded. this should not be happening anymore.

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we so need to let the train system get upgraded. this should not be happening anymore.

How many billions are we sending to Iraq per month? Imagine the infrastructure upgrades you could do with that. Or the alternative fuel research that could be conducted with that money. What a waste, the Iraq war as become, especially since the threat is in Afghanistan in the 1st place, since that's the country where Al Qaida resides. Not Iraq.

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How many billions are we sending to Iraq per month? Imagine the infrastructure upgrades you could do with that. Or the alternative fuel research that could be conducted with that money. What a waste, the Iraq war as become, especially since the threat is in Afghanistan in the 1st place, since that's the country where Al Qaida resides. Not Iraq.

Yes...I'm sickened when I think about the billions we have wasted on that pathetic sh*thole when we could have been investing the money in the US...

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Damn...hits close to home coming from a neighboring city...

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http://freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID...NEWS07/80913011

"This is the worst accident I've ever seen," Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said. "Clearly the injuries are going to mount and so are the fatalities."

Read the bold and add in "It sounded like ten thousand garbage trucks falling off the Empire State Building"

Edited by Casket Demon
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How many billions are we sending to Iraq per month? Imagine the infrastructure upgrades you could do with that. Or the alternative fuel research that could be conducted with that money. What a waste, the Iraq war as become, especially since the threat is in Afghanistan in the 1st place, since that's the country where Al Qaida resides. Not Iraq.

+1.

Chris

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How the hell does this still happen?!

Because we won't spend the money to upgrade our rail infrastructure. The Japanese bullet trains run MUCH faster and have an almost flawless safety record...they are willing to spend the money on a proper rail system, we are not.

Chris

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Because we won't spend the money to upgrade our rail infrastructure. The Japanese bullet trains run MUCH faster and have an almost flawless safety record...they are willing to spend the money on a proper rail system, we are not.

Chris

Yes..frustrating...every time I've been across the pond and ridden the rails in Europe it makes me angry how limited our rail infrastructure is. Arggh

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How the hell does this still happen?!

The engineer on the MetroLink train "ran a red" and proceeded down the track. Its operator error. It just happened to be in the worst possible place with the freight train coming out of tunnel and going downhill and the metrolink turning a 90 degree turn directly into the freight train.

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Because we won't spend the money to upgrade our rail infrastructure. The Japanese bullet trains run MUCH faster and have an almost flawless safety record...they are willing to spend the money on a proper rail system, we are not.

Chris

I'm not disagreeing where we spend are money but its unrealistic to compare japans to ours.

Japan

377,835 sq km

US

9,826,630 sq km

It would cost a lot more to revamp our structure than it was theirs. plus they had the ability to build new. While the US is stuck with an existing infrastructure from the 1800's. Which is more costly to upgrade than it is to build new.

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cars and planes are king here. if regulations and "subsidies" were equal it would spur much better rail.

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9c1 makes an excellent point.

It's the same thing I tel my dad when he goes on and on about cell phones in the EU.

Look at how small Europe is, About the size of Texas for chrissake.

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9c1 makes an excellent point.

It's the same thing I tel my dad when he goes on and on about cell phones in the EU.

Look at how small Europe is, About the size of Texas for chrissake.

Not by a long shot! :nono:

Texas = 268,601 Sq Miles

Europe = 3,837,000 Sq. Miles

My condolences to the families of this accident.

Edited by Pontiac Custom-S
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More than 25% of a recent $15billion federal infrastructure bill was set aside for rail transit projects like Metrolink. Zero $ were allocated for intercity rail projects like Japans bullet trains or France's TGVs, although a Michigan democrat was trying to add a few hundred million.

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A recent federal commission of transport infrastructure and funding requirements recommended spending of $8billion a year for the next 44 years on intercity rail projects to relieve expected congestion on highways and in airports. However with expected requirements to boost highway expenditure just to maintain the current system, it would require a substantial increase in the gas tax just to keep the highway trust fund from running out of money, let alone fund other infrastructure projects. Notgonnahappen.

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we may see the market favor rail more & more as fuel costs rise. Subsidies and tax breaks can manipulate the market, but eventually the most efficient methods win out as costs rise. A year ago, it was about the same cost for us to fly or take Amtrak from Salt Lake City to Indiana. Now Amtrak is half the price...

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we may see the market favor rail more & more as fuel costs rise. Subsidies and tax breaks can manipulate the market, but eventually the most efficient methods win out as costs rise. A year ago, it was about the same cost for us to fly or take Amtrak from Salt Lake City to Indiana. Now Amtrak is half the price...

Speaking of Salt Lake, I find Mormons (both the religion and the people) fascinating.

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Speaking of Salt Lake, I find Mormons (both the religion and the people) fascinating.

fascinating... that's one way to put it. lol Where I live actually has a higher % of mormon residents than SLC apparently. (not as many people move in & out of the area like a major city like SLC)

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