What the heck went on here? Is this some kind of crossing? Appears to be another car in the weeds.
That's a cattle guard. Prolly unrelated to the car situation.
Looks like the train didn't fare well either. There's a set of wheels in the background next to the tracks.
Train vs. car always results in train 1, car 0. It hasn't changed in the last century. Some things are always true.
Looks like the road crossing is about a hundred yards back. With one train truck/wheels/axle knocked out, the train probably didn't fare to well either? Then again, maybe that was just a part of the load lost?
I usually wonder about the driver and/or passengers in the car. I remember my dad telling of such a collision he saw a long time ago when a high-speed freight went through a late '30s sedan. The car was scattered for about a half mile by the train doing about 80 mph (the usual speed for that scheduled train). The drunk driver was alone, and survived unhurt.
Do drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
I sure could use that undented drivers side fender!!
It's the law of gross tonnage...he who weighs the most wins!
40 years ago I hit a high speed freight at a country crossing with a short quick bend in the road. Lucky for me that the speed of the train allowed it to chew thru the front of my car. I can still remember trying to shift into reverse for all the good it did. Got a ride back to town, phoned the cops and they didn't believe me and didn't show up for two hours. They apologized after seeing the mess.
The judge was kind enough to let me walk for 6 months during which time I bought a donor car and rebuilt the front end of mine, having it all ready to go when my license came back in the mail!
There were three of us in the car that night and nobody got a scratch. I'm sure I used up most of my good luck that night and have had nothing but bad luck ever since.
2 years after the wreck I hired on with that railroad and gave them the worst 37 years of my life!!
Garnet - I can relate to your story.
March 25, 1982, 1:36 PM, Shepard Road and N&S crossing near Painesville, OH, I was about ten feet farther forward that you when the train came at 43.5 MPH. It got my 1964 White Freightliner bobtail right in the right sleeper. The crossing was about 45 degrees with trees blocking the view to the right. If you "squared up" with the tracks to see to your right, you'd be blocking traffic. The cross bucks were a "plus" instead of and "X" and the track looked like a siding, but it was the main line from Buffalo to Cleveland.
Obviously, I survived, but still have some scars, but nothing permanent. My passenger didn't. I was charged with vehicular homicide and was sued by the son. My insurance paid for my defense and charges were dropped. The son collected $175000.
During this whole ordeal, we found out that there had been six fatalities in the previous nine years at that crossing. During the next couple of years while I was "settling up", three more trucks were hit there.
I went by there a few years back and see that now they've put up cross arms and flashers.......wish they'd done that sooner.
Ahh, a lot of memories I haven't thought about for a long time.
Trees are a big issue nowadays, specifically sight lines. If you have to drive over any railroad crossing where your view down the tracks is obstructed, then you need to contact the railroad and tell them if it's not corrected within a reasonable time period then your next phone call will be to the gov't. We had a wreck here two years ago from the impact of a fast freight and a loaded b-train semi. The driver said he didn't see it until it was too late to stop and the Feds agreed with him and the sup't got a talking to. That night a large trackhoe showed up and started clearing trees (in winter) and they continued clearing trees across the entire subdivision.
Sorry to hear your incident was the exact opposite of mine Fred. And one of the other guys in my car that night has been my brother inlaw for over 30 years.
Even my dad didn't believe me when I got home at 6am the next day (a courtesy ride from the cops). He too apologized when we drove up to the crossing!
And to everyone else reading this ... you may drive across the tracks every day and never see a train anywhere, but the one time you don't look both ways will be the time a train is bearing down on you. Look and stop when required - trying to beat a train is a good way to meet an undertaker! A crossing with just lights activated is generally a "Stop and Proceed when Safe" situation. An activated crossing with gates means absolutely stop - do NOT proceed.
AND ... if a crossing is configured with an automated warning system, look both ways still. Just because the lights aren't operating doesn't mean there's no train coming. Crossing maintenance was part of my responsibility and there are instances where a relay failure will keep the crossing dark with a train within its approach circuits. Look, Look, Look.
Funny you mentioned 1982. I got married in April of '82 and while preparing things at my wife's grandparents place I noticed a man from town had stopped his farm tractor on the tracks to talk to one of his sons that was driving by. Sure enough, a freight train comes thru and the dad saw it in time to pop the clutch and get off the tracks. His son didn't and got hit. Luckily he survived but was crumpled up in the back window when he was rescued. We visited with him a few days later in hospital and he apologized for ruining our day. Don't know why he felt like that - we were just thankful he was okay.
Sounds like you two have "gotten sober" the hard way about physics and the laws of complacency.
Good that you made it through, but I often give pause to stories where stuff like this happens and chalk
it up to "Darwin" on some of the stuff people do as they go through life with their head in a Disneyland
It seems a no brainer to grasp the BE VERY SURE thing regarding trains and at-grade crossings, but
the stories never end ! Hell, ... you'd have to have never left the jungles of the upper Amazon basin to
NOT know that smoking is probably not a great idea, yet millions do it and millions start up with full know-
ledge of its risks. It's a "nothing bad ever happens to me" paradigm that most have at youth and some
never do "wake up".
Whaddya gonna do ?
I was the head end man in a locomotive pulling 800 tons of freight on regular trips and you would not believe how many close calls we would have each trip. Some times you could not see the car over the cab of the engine at 40 miles per hour (and 800 tons). Cars would even drive around the gates. Another crew hit a car and the car did some damage to the brake lines of the locomotive, the poor guy survived the incident and while in the hospital the rail way company presented him with a bill for the damages. Their position is he was on private property.
David...yeh, one might feel a bit of sympathy for a guy in the hospital recovering from the incident that he created, but that's my point, the dip-shit trying to beat the train caused it all in the first place. He's just lucky he survived it as good as he did.
In 1956 I attempted to drive a 37 Ford coupe across the Southern pacific Railroad track at Chevy Chase Drive near San Fernando Rd. in Glendale Ca. My error was that I started out from a stop in low gear and tried to shift into second as I crossed the track. The shift mechanism was worn and the transmission stuck in low and second at the same time which locked up the rear axle. I could not even push the car off the tracks! Fortunately for me a motorcycle police officer saw me and he actually pushed me with his motorcycle front wheel against my rear bumper and somehow he had enough traction and power to slide my rear wheels until I was off the tracks! I was very fortunate.
The moral is: Do not shift gears while crossing railroad tracks!
On a little lighter note: here in Modesto, CA there was a track that ran all the way through town. It was rarely used and eventually the tracks were mostly removed. However, although there are no tracks on either side of several street crossings, the tracks that actually cross the street are still there. Also still present are the railroad crossing signs. So, busses, gasoline tanker trucks, etc. are still required to stop before crossing.
One by one they're disappearing, but meanwhile it does have a humorous side.
and then there was the teenage girl in florida last spring who walked, yes walked into the side of a train while looking at her phone
I've lost count of how many young people, both male and female, who I've seen step off the curb to cross a street and their eyes are glued to a phone.
I'm beginning to think its the latest evidence that Darwin (and others) were right in their "survival of the fittest" ideas. These kids are not likely to survive long enough to reproduce.
Just today, while heading to a job along a major n-s arterial, a woman stepped off the
curb and about 1/3 of the way across my lane at about 20 feet off my bumper as I was
going about 35mph ! She spun 90º to face the curb where a man she was walking with
continued and was screaming/yelling at him - obviously in a heated argument.
She was completely oblivious to the street and traffic and never even looked at my truck
as I missed her by about 12 inches. I had a heavy load on my racks and had been carefully
watching the traffic around me as we went up the street just prior to the near miss. Had I
not been watching so carefully, and aware that the lane beside me was clear to move over,
she would be dead right now.
It almost looks like that car has a Model K hood.
Burger, That happens all TOO often! Who was it that said "Fate seems to favor the foolish"? Most drivers seem to be as unaware as those pedestrians. I often wonder why it is people like you and I that they step in front of instead of the clueless moron talking on his cell phone staring at the headliner in his SUV!
So glad that you missed her. I know that I wouldn't want to have that image burned into my memory for the rest of my life.
As for Darwin, unfortunately, too many of those morons are reproducing too young.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2