Hopping a UP train from St. Paul to Des Moines

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Hopping a UP train from St. Paul to Des Moines

Postby NoahDaBoa » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:02 am

I don't have a radio scanner and I want to guarantee I'm headed to Des Moines instead of Chicago or Kansas City. How likely is it that a manifest (or other) will stay on UP's Spine Line all the was to Des Moines instead of heading W in Manly, IA or heading W or E in Nevada, IA?

I know the dangers of hopping trains, etc, and I've hopped one from DSM to KC before, now I'm trying to visit my gal who is living in Des Moines... FOR FREE. Help me out!
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Re: Hopping a UP train from St. Paul to Des Moines

Postby NoahDaBoa » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:06 am

Also if I got a radio scanner what should I listen for? The letter's "DM" in the train's ID? Will the engineers/workers just say something blatantly like, "She's headin' down to Des Moines in ten minutes"?

An FRA report on train-caused deaths said that 22% are people walking (half were intoxicated, many had headphones), 20% are from sleeping/laying on the tracks, 18% were suicides, and only 8% were from riding. Usually the riders were intoxicated or in their teens.
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Re: Hopping a UP train from St. Paul to Des Moines

Postby Watchman318 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:23 pm

NoahDaBoa wrote:An FRA report on train-caused deaths said that 22% are people walking (half were intoxicated, many had headphones), 20% are from sleeping/laying on the tracks, 18% were suicides, and only 8% were from riding. Usually the riders were intoxicated or in their teens.
Some of us read the FRA casualty reports occasionally, and even without the statistics, we're well aware of the stupid stuff people do on railroad property, and the contributing factors like intoxication, etc.

Trespassing is trespassing, whether you're part of the "only 8%" attempting to illegally ride, or in any other way "being someplace you're not supposed to be."
"Whoever intentionally trespasses . . . on a railroad track, yard, or bridge is guilty of a misdemeanor." (Minnestoa Statutes Chap. 609, Sec. 85, Subd. 6)
Iowa has a specific statute against "stowing away" on a train, also a misdemeanor. (Iowa Code 716.9)

Misdemeanors usually get you less than a year in jail, but sometimes the penalty for railroad trespassing is death. To paraphrase a certain TV commercial, "Don't end up in a trackside ditch." :-(
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Re: Hopping a UP train from St. Paul to Des Moines

Postby NoahDaBoa » Fri Sep 12, 2014 3:09 pm

I figured people wouldn't respond well. I agree though, the most severe penalty is death. A friend of mine said, "Just don't get caught!" I'm not worried about being caught by the cops, I'm worried about getting caught under the wheel! Some of the stories are horrific.

As for the statistics, I just wanted to let you guys and gals know that I'm aware, and not a total idiot :)
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Re: Hopping a UP train from St. Paul to Des Moines

Postby Desertdweller » Sun Feb 08, 2015 8:48 pm

My procedure on finding a stowaway on my train was to stop the train and throw him off.

Les
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