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View Diary: 60 Reported missing in Lac-Megantic oil train explosion (42 comments)

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  •  Proof that it was mechanical failure. (1+ / 0-)
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    •  A question was asked . "How". (13+ / 0-)
      How the hell did this happen? (4+ / 0-)

          The train was originally parked but was moving without a conductor...

      It takes a lot of torque to get a train with 73 full tankers to move at all.

      I gave some possible ways it could have happened .
      Not all track is flat .
      There are computerized trains now .
      People screw around with things they should not touch .
      Mechanical failure .
      I did not say any of the ways I mentioned was the way it happened , I listed four ways it might be that a train rolls away unintentionally / uncontrolled .


      There is a system being fitted to diesel trains now that starts and stops the motor when no one is on board .
      In the past they would leave a diesel running to keep the engine warm , now the diesel in the train is started up to warm up , shut down when up to temp and then started up again to warm up again once the computer sees the temp is down .

      The standard you walk past is the standard you accept. David Morrison

      by indycam on Sat Jul 06, 2013 at 12:24:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If this is true (9+ / 0-)
      The cars filled with fuel somehow became uncoupled, causing them to roll downhill into the town and derail, said the spokesman, Joe McGonigle.
      then my list has two if not more of the "How".
      1) "Not all track is flat ."
      2) "People screw around with things they should not touch" or "Mechanical failure"

      Couplings do fail , I've seen reports and photos of failed / broken couplings .
      If the train was parked on an incline and only the locomotive brakes were set , the weight of the tanks would be pulling on the coupling . It might just have given up the ghost .
      If they find that the coupling isn't broken then maybe someone screwed around with it when they should not have been touching it .

      The standard you walk past is the standard you accept. David Morrison

      by indycam on Sat Jul 06, 2013 at 12:34:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  if they are still airbrakes (4+ / 0-)

        like the old days, the brakes should all have locked once the train was de-coupled from the locomotive's air pressure source.  iirc,  that's how they work.

        don't always believe what you think

        by claude on Sat Jul 06, 2013 at 02:44:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The brakes on filled rail tanks rolling at speed (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lefty Coaster, LieparDestin, Creosote

          do not stop the rail tanks quickly .
          If , as reported , the rail tanks were going very quickly down an incline , it might be that it would take a good long while to slow down / stop .
          In a working train , part of what the human running it does is control the speed such that the brakes are not overtaxed .
          In a run away train there is no such thing , it can get going at speeds that no rational human would allow , it can get going such that the brakes are not going to be effective at controlling / keeping from going up in a overheated puff of smoke .

          The report is now the locomotive was also found down the hill from where it was parked , if the whole train started down the slope , gaining speed until it came from togetherness , the rail tanks might have been going real good when the airbrakes came into play , perhaps the speed and incline was more than what the brakes could absorb before over heating ? If the brakes overheated and started to fail the rail tanks might not have been slowed enough , the failure / overheat might have gotten into a runaway zone that caused greater heating and more failure .

          Anyway , I'm sure it will all be written up soon ,
          then I'll read the reports of how it all happened .


          The standard you walk past is the standard you accept. David Morrison

          by indycam on Sat Jul 06, 2013 at 03:11:57 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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