Deadly Train Inferno 'Very Dangerous'

Jun 20, 2009 Full story: ABC News 36

Tank cars loaded with thousands of gallons of highly flammable ethanol exploded in flames as a freight train derailed, killing one person and forcing evacuations of hundreds of nearby homes.

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Shawn

Peoria, IL

#1 Jun 20, 2009
HAHA HA, this is why us people in the northwest suburbs did not want the CN running the J, its bad enough they got the CC IC iowa division and tearing to hell, I feel bad for the woman that died and the three that got burned plus the evacuations... take the CN and hunter harrison to the cleaners your all rich...
Not a Railroader

Omaha, NE

#2 Jun 21, 2009
Shawn wrote:
HAHA HA, this is why us people in the northwest suburbs did not want the CN running the J, its bad enough they got the CC IC iowa division and tearing to hell, I feel bad for the woman that died and the three that got burned plus the evacuations... take the CN and hunter harrison to the cleaners your all rich...
Shawn,

Tell me what track structure is designed to handle 3.25 inches of rain in one hour? According to the Rockford newspaper (Rockford Register Star) between 7-8 p.m. 3.25 inches of rain fell on the area (a total of 4.2 inches fell all day). The train derailed at 8:30 p.m.
http://content.gatehousemedia.com/files/1/Tim...
I know this area well, I grew up near there and have crossed that crossing many times. It is in a small valley area, which means that much of the water from the rain would have run down into the area compounding the problem. Think about it, 3.25 inches of rain in a single day (and they had 4.2) is a lot, 3.25 inches in a single hour is huge. I think that when all is said and done the investigation will come to the conclusion that the cause was circumstances beyond human control (i.e. a massive rainstorm).
Gramps

Lemont, IL

#3 Jun 21, 2009
Yes, this was a CN train operating on CN tracks and, in all likelihood, CN will be liable for the damages. With this set of circumstances in regards to weather, geography, train consist, etc.,this accident could have happened on any railroad in North America; it just happened to have happened on CN.
Shawn

Peoria, IL

#4 Jun 21, 2009
it might have been under human control Yes, im not a track worker, i am a freight train conductor and i am responsible for the safe movement of my train. i have been threw that area over 1000 times from 1993-1995. I do infact remember alot of times that track being under water. What we did, is not rocket science, I got off the locomotive and stood at the problem area and watched 70-120 cars go over that area at restricted speed,(NOT TRACK SPEED LIKE THE CN) if i seen a car lift up i would tell the engineer to DUMP IT. not real rocket science there. Oh wow so i had to walk back to the engine BIG DEAL. I have never cost anyone of my co-employees lives nor the general public. The Canadian National sends WC crews to work the Iowa division and IC crews to work the WC (in short crews who are not qualified to operate those lines) CNs answer, and I qoute,(oh we derail well just send a couple bull dozers out there to clean up, no biggie, on any derailment) CC put billions into infrustructure on the line from 1991-1995. IC did put some money into it after the buy out. CN did what, oh, the rebuilt the rt.47 and county farm road railroad crossing.

In short and I do qoute my rules book does state you do restricted speed under those conditions...They could have also stopped and called track department and had them watch it over, im sure someone lives in the rockford area that works for CN. Restricted speed my good friend, not track speed. in short the crew is largly at blame and should be included in any lawsuite that may be ongoing...
Not a Railroader wrote:
<quoted text>
Shawn,
Tell me what track structure is designed to handle 3.25 inches of rain in one hour? According to the Rockford newspaper (Rockford Register Star) between 7-8 p.m. 3.25 inches of rain fell on the area (a total of 4.2 inches fell all day). The train derailed at 8:30 p.m.
http://content.gatehousemedia.com/files/1/Tim...
I know this area well, I grew up near there and have crossed that crossing many times. It is in a small valley area, which means that much of the water from the rain would have run down into the area compounding the problem. Think about it, 3.25 inches of rain in a single day (and they had 4.2) is a lot, 3.25 inches in a single hour is huge. I think that when all is said and done the investigation will come to the conclusion that the cause was circumstances beyond human control (i.e. a massive rainstorm).
Shawn

Peoria, IL

#5 Jun 21, 2009
Not on my crew, like i told the last guy, restricted speed and someone watching if need be, not track speed.
Gramps wrote:
Yes, this was a CN train operating on CN tracks and, in all likelihood, CN will be liable for the damages. With this set of circumstances in regards to weather, geography, train consist, etc.,this accident could have happened on any railroad in North America; it just happened to have happened on CN.
Shawn

Peoria, IL

#6 Jun 22, 2009
Ha, you can disagree and call me mean all day, but i will tell you what, bet you two have never been in a cab of a locomotive nor worked for a railroad. Yes every railroad has its derailments, just like every highway has its car accidents, or every airport might get a mishap every now and then. SO im mean because i fell sorry for the family who lost a member, or the three that got burned, and im against the CN...Well you guys every been to a unemployement line when you worked for a railroad and the take over (CN)tells you your under are age limit, yeah i found a job on another railroad with in 4 weeks or so. Tell me something you two, go to youtube and look up CN accidents and tell me why every CN wreck blows up into balls of fire. The facts are there, and yes the FRA will pull the tapes on the engine, and yes the crew should have known better, but thats why General Motors and General Electric put ditch lights on locomotives which was a rule since 1995 so you can see the track and stuff around you much better. water on roadbed is clearly seen.
Shawn

Peoria, IL

#7 Jun 22, 2009
CN by far has the worst track record for derailments, HENCE TRACK....
midwest rail

Saint Charles, IL

#8 Jun 22, 2009
Shawn, you certainly are quick to throw your brother railroaders under the bus. You were not there on the night in question, and therefore have NO firsthand knowledge of the track conditions that day. You may be employed by a railroad, but you're no rail.
John

Elk Grove Village, IL

#9 Jun 22, 2009
Would not it make sense to just not drive thru flooded property? How hard can that be?
We fought against CN buying the J exactly for this reason. All the pro deal people said 'crashes are rare.' Right. Just so you understand the danger here is a little clip of a CN crash in Canada. This is what we don't want. It is exactly what happened in Rockford.
&fe ature=related
Not a Railroader

Omaha, NE

#10 Jun 22, 2009
midwest rail wrote:
Shawn, you certainly are quick to throw your brother railroaders under the bus. You were not there on the night in question, and therefore have NO firsthand knowledge of the track conditions that day. You may be employed by a railroad, but you're no rail.
Midwest,

Your are spot on with your comments. I believe that waiting for the results of the investigation is important. Shawn throws aspersions around so quickly that it makes your head spin. He has attacked everyone from the train conductor, to CN operations and track maintenance (MOW). I may not work the railroad, but I believe (from what I've been told) that a crew is not allowed to work a line (subdivision) until they have been trained and familiarized with that line. I also heard that if they have not worked a line for a certain amount of time they need to be retrained/familiarized with that line again.
It is interesting that among other things the NTSB has reported, the track was inspected Friday afternoon (the same day as the derailment) and was found to be in good shape, however that was before the 4.2 inches of rain fell.
http://manager.ghm.zope.net/debug/rrstar/news...
Also, The train was not going full speed (50 mph for that stretch of track) when the derailment happened. According to the NTSB, "The train was accelerating at the time, going from a speed of about 19 miles an hour to 34 miles per hour when the cars derailed." The derailment happened at mile post 80 and at the time of the derailment "there was a report being made from the train that derailed about high water between mile posts 84.5 and 81."
http://www.rrstar.com/cherryvalley/x135720358...
From this report it seems that the conductor (and engineer) might have been restricting the speed of the train because of the possibility of water causing track problems. Maybe they thought that the potential problem area was past, and maybe they did not see standing water in this area. It is hard to say what the facts of the case are at this point.
Shawn appears to be jumping to conclusions based upon his dislike for a particular company and its management. He has done a disservice to the reputations of many hard working individuals in both maintenance of way and operations at CN. I wonder, if the NTSB conclusions find that this was not caused by bad operations or maintenance will he be as quick to apologize to those individuals as he was to trash their reputations?
midwest rail

Saint Charles, IL

#11 Jun 22, 2009
NAR -

Shawn has just enough information to sound like he knows what he's talking about. He didnt actually quote the rulebook ( GCOR )- and i want him to, if he has one.
I find it interesting that the NTSB has said their investigation may take up to a year, but Shawn has all the answers pre-packaged in just two days. I wonder why he doesnt work for them ?
CSX_Conductor

Springfield, MO

#12 Jun 22, 2009
Well train cars do not hydroplane....as one article put out by the NTSB is trying to say....

2. Shawn has carrier mentality, by assuming the crew did something they werent supposed to do...
for example read this quote: "Klejst said federal regulations require train conductors to take “appropriate measures” when there are reports of high water, which can mean “slowing down and stopping, if necessary.”
All that statement does is try to set an atmosphere so the crew can be blamed for this derailment if things point to the carriers not maintaining the railbed, where erosion and high water was reported before.

Its just sad that everytime something like this happens, the general public has no idea what might have led up to the accident, and probably never will. Sadder is the fact that Shawn acts as management and starts mouthing off about rules and rulebooks. Just cause you can memorize a book doesnt mean you understand it.
Shawn

Bloomingdale, IL

#13 Jun 22, 2009
THANKYOU, I see you excatly know my points 100%, yes every railroad will have a derailment, but YES bullseye, every CN accident winds up with a big ball of fire with 100s of people who have to evacuate. Yes they should have been doing restricted speed. my mom had a part time job at a little catholic school in westchicago, It is now closed due to this merger. Jobs its created HhhhMmmmm how about all the J employess fearing for there jobs and the small buisness owner that is somewhere near the J tracks and now people fear additional trains and dont want the headaches. Yes im a railroader and i do like to see rail traffic but not when all the industrys are forced to use trucks along the J because CN dosnt want to run locals, they are only interested in the road jobs. THANKYOU YOUR COMMENT IS GREAT...
John wrote:
Would not it make sense to just not drive thru flooded property? How hard can that be?
We fought against CN buying the J exactly for this reason. All the pro deal people said 'crashes are rare.' Right. Just so you understand the danger here is a little clip of a CN crash in Canada. This is what we don't want. It is exactly what happened in Rockford.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v =YOPE_Xt4QxYXX&feature=rel ated
Shawn

Bloomingdale, IL

#14 Jun 22, 2009
I dont have the book memorized, People died...DO YOU UNDERSTAND, how would you feel if you lost someone close to you in a train accident, car accident, or plane...I have been over this crossing alot from 1992-1995 and i do remember slow orders slapped on that section many times during flood season, just as well as gary ave in bloomingdale. I have had 13 grade crossing accidents and actually have had familys try to slap lawsuites on me and my engineer, some i will never talk about others were just slight hits. after tapes were pulled on the engine we were off. Im not saying im perfect nor is anyone else, we are all human and make mistakes. my big argument is my former company CHICAGO CENTRAL which was owned by GE CAPITAL dumped loads of money upgrading the line. IC had 478 slow orders, and track defects in 1984-85 when CC took over, when CC sold back to IC there was 27 give or take depending on time of year. Instead of sticking up for CN why dont you watch some youtube videos of CN derailments. You wanna live close to the CN have at it, im on the other hand keepin my distance.
CSX_Conductor wrote:
Well train cars do not hydroplane....as one article put out by the NTSB is trying to say....
2. Shawn has carrier mentality, by assuming the crew did something they werent supposed to do...
for example read this quote: "Klejst said federal regulations require train conductors to take “appropriate measures” when there are reports of high water, which can mean “slowing down and stopping, if necessary.”
All that statement does is try to set an atmosphere so the crew can be blamed for this derailment if things point to the carriers not maintaining the railbed, where erosion and high water was reported before.
Its just sad that everytime something like this happens, the general public has no idea what might have led up to the accident, and probably never will. Sadder is the fact that Shawn acts as management and starts mouthing off about rules and rulebooks. Just cause you can memorize a book doesnt mean you understand it.
CSX_Conductor

Springfield, MO

#15 Jun 22, 2009
How do you know they should have been doing restricted speed? and how do you know they werent?
Where I work out of, people like you normally have to drive home on 4 flat tires until they cant afford to keep buying tires and quit the railroad. We employees have enough to worry about with incompetent managers, to be worried about our fellow brothers throwing others off the edge.
Shawn

Bloomingdale, IL

#16 Jun 22, 2009
because i value my life, and I did however go on the ground here once as i remember, it was a local and wasnt bad. I do belive there is something there under the tracks, some sorta water main or something. I do remember CC had to retamper the track there alot, theres other crossing like that like i mentioned Gary ave, and i do belive lies road, and york road... Not sure what they were but i do remember a gas line at Gary ave...I have never seen CN reatamper anything out there. i have only seen and heard of three highrailers a year.
midwest rail wrote:
NAR -
Shawn has just enough information to sound like he knows what he's talking about. He didnt actually quote the rulebook ( GCOR )- and i want him to, if he has one.
I find it interesting that the NTSB has said their investigation may take up to a year, but Shawn has all the answers pre-packaged in just two days. I wonder why he doesnt work for them ?
Shawn

Bloomingdale, IL

#17 Jun 22, 2009
you ought to see the hermonic rock on this line, I have been on branches were its bad, but i have never seen it on the main line. Let me tell you, i get stopped by the UP, NS, CSX i go up to the gate...i get stopped by the CN I stay back and im ready to fly, or i find a differnt route home...
Shawn wrote:
I dont have the book memorized, People died...DO YOU UNDERSTAND, how would you feel if you lost someone close to you in a train accident, car accident, or plane...I have been over this crossing alot from 1992-1995 and i do remember slow orders slapped on that section many times during flood season, just as well as gary ave in bloomingdale. I have had 13 grade crossing accidents and actually have had familys try to slap lawsuites on me and my engineer, some i will never talk about others were just slight hits. after tapes were pulled on the engine we were off. Im not saying im perfect nor is anyone else, we are all human and make mistakes. my big argument is my former company CHICAGO CENTRAL which was owned by GE CAPITAL dumped loads of money upgrading the line. IC had 478 slow orders, and track defects in 1984-85 when CC took over, when CC sold back to IC there was 27 give or take depending on time of year. Instead of sticking up for CN why dont you watch some youtube videos of CN derailments. You wanna live close to the CN have at it, im on the other hand keepin my distance.<quoted text>
CSX_Conductor

Springfield, MO

#18 Jun 22, 2009
If its not in your orders/ec-1 form to run restricted speed there, then you get fired for delay of train, then what?
Like midwest said, you dumped on your fellow brothers just a tad bit to fast.
Of course we care someone died, but you are the one throwing people in YOUR craft under the bus with your lemonhead assumptions.
midwest rail

Saint Charles, IL

#19 Jun 22, 2009
Shawn wrote:
because i value my life, and I did however go on the ground here once as i remember, it was a local and wasnt bad. I do belive there is something there under the tracks, some sorta water main or something. I do remember CC had to retamper the track there alot, theres other crossing like that like i mentioned Gary ave, and i do belive lies road, and york road... Not sure what they were but i do remember a gas line at Gary ave...I have never seen CN reatamper anything out there. i have only seen and heard of three highrailers a year. <quoted text>
Let me repeat my request, since you chose to disregard it. You claimed in an earlier post to be quoting the rule book - please direct me to the rule in question, if you can. Nothing in your response addresses that, nor do you explain your willingness to throw fellow railroaders to the wolves - as i said before, you may be EMPLOYED by a railroad, but you, sir, are NO rail.
CSX_Conductor

Springfield, MO

#20 Jun 22, 2009
CSX has its fair share of derailments, the management just has better liars than those on the CN.
Why not blame the CN for not putting out a slow order?
If you have worked on the railroad a few years, you should know you dont just start running restricted speed on line of road without being told to by special instructions OR in your orders.
So again, how can you toss this crew under the bus like you did?

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