“These people weren’t thinking,” Goddard said. “To save a couple of seconds, they died.”
Patrick Goddard is president of Florida’s new – officially launched in January 2018 – higher-speed passenger train, 79 mph, just like Amtrak through Lakewood.
Also, like Lakewood, the Brightline trains (they’re painted neon yellow) travel through “some of Florida’s most densely populated cities.”
And, like Lakewood, Tillicum, DuPont, people die there in train accidents.
So many die on the Brightline route that this gruesome statistic garnered the following headline this morning: “Richard Branson’s Florida train kills more per mile than any other in US”.
British billionaire Sir Richard Charles Nicolas Branson founded the Virgin Group that controls more than 400 companies, the Brightline being one of his partnerships.
Unlike Lakewood, so far anyway, the body count in Florida is not due to rail fail – which was the case here – but rather that to which Goddard referred were suicides and track-warning scofflaws – “drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists who dash across the tracks trying to beat the train.”
“To save a couple of seconds, they died” said Goddard.
To save 10 minutes – about the average time a person waits for his morning coffee – in travel time from Seattle to Portland, Amtrak et al, with its Point Defiance Bypass Project, took the lives of three people injuring scores more for any number of non-thinking ‘fails of the rail.’
This December 18 will be two years since Amtrak’s inaugural run that never finished its route.
Silver Rails, Silver Rails,
Amtrak will soon return through the city,
High Speed Rail, cannot fail,
Soon it will be Christmas Day.
Except for some.
Ismail Arslangiray says
Well said..Everyone was for the project now hiding under the rocks. We voiced our concerns long before it started but it went into the deaf ears.
Rob Lopaka says
IMHO The Point Defiance Bypass Project is to speed up freight trains by removing passenger trains from the Point Defiance route. Saying its to cut travel time for Amtrak is a ruse.
And that is the truth. The new route actually took a large section of scenic view away from one of Amtrak’s most popular routes. The splitting of direction was pushed by the state of WA to appease the freight co. But the accident was human error. The engineer is on record w/ the NTSB that he knew the curve was there, he just missed the sign to slow down. As for PTC not being installed prior to running, the manufactures did not have enough product for everyone. It was WA that would have lost a ton of cash in grants if they had not started service. Maybe congress should have just extended that money’s availability until PTC equipment was available.
William Marsh says
Everyone that signed off on that inaugural First Crash should be wearing bright Orange for the rest of there lives. Money, money pushed this mess into gear, greed for more freight cars coming into Port of Tacoma so that passenger traffic wouldn’t interfere with the bulk oil shipments coming into Tacoma for processing. Safety, nothing but HOT AIR coming from all unconcerned as far as the ones that signed off on this Crash, this was no accident, lots on concerned people felt the need to say WOOOO, lets Slow this Down some OK guy’s! Nope, we are going to show we have all things covered, even our rear’s in case of a accident, which from what I can see has happened to all these High Officials that proudly said Let’s Go! They went into hiding as fast as lightening, remember, WSP spent almost 4 day’s trying to contact BNSF, nobody Home, no response, what a terrible way to show your concern for the people that died and the one’s that are still injured. If this Run is ever approved again the people who sign off on the SAFETY of this route must ride on this Train for 30 days in all weather conditions to prove without a doubt that this Train route will be safe, Period!! Lots of concerned citizens tried to pull the wax out of many uninterested officials on this Passenger Train Route, there on notice by the town, the injured passengers from before, and the World, this mess hit the press worldwide, this can’t happen ever again!!!!!!
Washington’s Socialist government doesn’t care! People are simply an expendable commodity for corrupt, communistic politicians. Washington state leaders like Governor Inslee and those in the majority don’t care how many people die, only that money keeps flowing into Washington state. “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils.” (1 Timothy 6:10) Until government cares more about people than money, this kind of thing will happen over and over again. Some politicians in government think, “I want this so, force them, tax them, coerce the people, just take it from them, don’t ask. If the people say NO, just ignore them and do it anyway!” Who can prove me wrong? Washington state majority politics has sunk into a deep, dark pit of socialist group-think where only the “state” matters not the individual people! Still praying for our state to come back to American founding principles of freedom and liberty with responsibility! If no one is held accountable, they will simply do it again. Who is in jail or lost their job because of the Amtrak disaster?
Actually the head of safety of WA rail just lost their job and Amtrak added an EVP of Safety. You don’t put people in jail for human error which the Amtrak very clearly stated it was.
Interesting that someone was finally held accountable. At the time of my comment, no one had been held accountable. And, yes, we do put people in jail for “human error” when it results in death. It happens all the time in America. Reckless Endangerment, Manslaughter and Negligent Homicide are all forms of “human error” that result in criminal prosecution and, if convicted, may lead to imprisonment.
Even so, disregard for human life and safety is not “human error”, regardless of what Amtrak said, I have read much of the previous congressional report and watched the testimony on this issue and the problems were many and widespread. The entire system was replete with hubris and disregard for the important safety issues which were constantly brought up by the communities involved: Issues like the train cars themselves were not properly manufactured and secured and were not the correct design for their use by Amtrak; and, concerns about running through densely populated areas or lack of training or implementation of Positive Train Control technology.
In the final analysis, it was the push to get the first run done by a particular date so that Governor Inslee could say that he was responsible for millions of dollars coming in to Washington state. Of course, he didn’t brag about that after the wreck killed 3 people and injured about 5 dozen others.
The issues that resulted in the wreck were monetary and political. The report indicated that almost no one in this process of approving the steps involved in getting the high-speed train’s first run by the deadline for federal funds brought up the significant issues and concerns that other professionals who were involved in the analysis pointed out. Many of the same concerns were brought out by the City of Lakewood and neighboring towns before the wreck.
“Don’t worry. Everything will be fine.” is not a reasonable approach to legitimate concerns regarding public safety. We tried to warn Amtrak, WSDOT, Governor Inslee and many others that this high-speed train project wasn’t ready and wasn’t safe but, the “we-know-know-better-than-you” leftist politicians in Washington state have shown their true colors, once again. They just want your money. They don’t care about our lives.