Train vs bridge

If they’d just deflated the tyres of the train a couple inches, everything would’ve been fine.


If cattle could fly, so many would escape.

Oh the eagles, they fly high over Memphis
Yes the eagles, they fly high over Memphis
Oh the eagles, they fly high
And they shit right in your eye
And I’m glad that cows don’t fly over Memphis


Perhaps you have failed to consider a more nefarious conclusion: The driver had a loco motive


When you’re understaffed and underpaid?

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That one suv must have had the moon roof option, and the glass top peeled off like a banana peel. Now, if only I could come up with an appropriate moon roof joke…

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I wouldn’t have stood on that bridge while this was going on. On the other hand, that was quite clearly not the worst decision made that day :slight_smile:

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This exactly. You know how long it takes to brake a double or triple header train? I sure don’t, but I know that some piddling thing like the roof being peeled off of the freight cars isn’t enough to appreciably contribute to the process.

EDIT: OK yeah, those first 5 seconds of the video do seem fishy.

OT: We call this type of event “Storrowing” in Boston, MA USA.

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I don’t understand this video if I look at the very beginning.
Can someone explain how the roof on the first car is already destroyed BEFORE it got to the bridge? Did he back up and try it again?

This is my guess by seeing the last picture too. It’s obviously after the train back it up a bit .

That is ludicrous and horrible and I like it.


Why would the sides of the rail cars be crumpled? They didn’t hit the bridge. They would be crumpled only if the roof was pretty solid and it was strongly attached to the sides, so the force of impact is passed through the roof into the sides. But those roofs are very lightly built. They’re not meant to be load bearing, they’re just intended to keep hail off the vehicles being hauled. They’re made as light and thin as possible to make them as cheap as possible, and there’s no engineering reason to attach them with anything more than a few pop rivets.

A lot of the material sheared from the roofs of the rail cars folded down into the interiors of the cars. That’s why the automobiles inside got damaged.


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That’s probably just how long it took to stop. At open mainline speed, a train can take miles to stop, even under full emergency braking. This appears to be a much slower moving train, perhaps an intraurban switcher. Still, 50 yards or so to stop would not be unreasonable.

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You don’t know that at all. That train could be a mile long, and this consist of auto racks could be in the middle somewhere. The engineer may have had no idea and was stopping for a signal ahead. The “backing up” could be coupler slack. We only see it for a split second.

Um, what? Not at all. The camera person is on an overpass, and there may be no way to get to the line below from there without climbing two fences and scrambling down a steep embankment. Even if they could, are you imagining this person running alongside a moving train trying to flag them down? They’ll never see you or hear you in the locomotive.

The “backing up” could be a lot of things. The train may have been stopped as part of a signal a mile ahead and what we see is coupler slackening. We don’t know how long this train is or where the autorack consist is in the train. Trains don’t make small moves like you’re picturing. Even at switching speeds, it takes 50 yards to stop and 100 yards to get any kind of minimal forward momentum going. It may take half a mile just to take up the slack in the couplers again if it was stopped on a slight downgrade. Everything a train does is planned miles in advance. The physics are more analogous to a cruise ship or a Supermax container ship than a car or truck. Mapping your life experience of cars on to them will lead you astray as to what they are doing and why.

I’m beginning to suspect nobody in this thread has ever even seen a train in real life. :smirk:


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