• Crossing Accident at UT

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in the American Midwest, including Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas. For questions specific to a railroad company, please seek the appropriate forum.
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in the American Midwest, including Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas. For questions specific to a railroad company, please seek the appropriate forum.

Moderator: railohio

  by chessie8212
I am a student at UT and we have a single track branch line that runs through our campus to a grain elevator in Michigan. This line is at a restricted speed as trains only come through on this jointed rail at about 10 mph.

Tonight a Jeep Wrangler was struck by an NS local hauling roughly 20 grain cars back to the NS yard. It happened about 45 minutes ago. There were 4 passengers in the car when it was struck. All four were standing and talking to police officers at the scene. One will be transported to a local hospital after complaining of slight pain in his ribs.

What gets me the most is this...

The attitude of the onlookers. All were completely bashing the railroad. Any and all complaints were being said. From "When are they gonna get this stupid thing moving so I don't have to listen to it all night" to "These things come through so slow, I can understand why they did it"

They come through here slow so that people don't DIE when they do something stupid like this. The line runs right behind the Fraternity/Sorority row. God only knows what would happen when alcohol, frat boys, and fast trains are all in a close area. It's not the train's fault. It's not the railroad's fault. It's the students who attempted to beat a SHORT freight train which would have cost them maybe 2 or 3 minutes.

It angers me to hear and see the reactions of people during something like this. The best part though... these kids were trying to beat the train on a road specifically reserved for the campus police cars which enter and exit the police station right next to the tracks. Nothing like breaking more than a few rules when you're being an idiot huh?

Here is the only news story I can find on it... WUPW
Jeep Hit by Train
------------------------------------------------------------------------ --------

4/21/2004 at 22:10

TOLEDO -- Tense moments after a train slams into a Jeep near the University of Toledo campus.

Toledo Police say a Jeep Wrangler was hit on the right side by a train near the Police Station around 10:00 Wednesday night.

There aren't any warnings or crossgates in that area.

Police say the jeep was using an illegal short cut at the access road near the Police Department.

All five people managed to bail out of the Jeep before it was struck. The train was only going about ten miles per hour at the time.

  by mike
On my way to class this morning, I noticed there was a more in-depth story on the front page of today's Independent Collegian giving more details than the WUPW story, but basically saying the same thing as the account you just gave. Hopefully NS doesn't get into trouble for not having gates or lights or anything at this crossing given that it isn't a public crossing and the driver of the wrangler was in the wrong for one, driving down the drive, and two, trying to beat the train. The collegian said that the engineer was sounding his horn, etc... at the time of the accident.

  by matt
Yeah guys, I've done the UT thing too. There are some people there that I have to question whether or not a college education will be enough to save them or if it's just hopeless.

What's obviously most difficult to believe is that the train was going less than 10MPH. You really have to try hard to get hit by a train moving at that speed.

I can only wonder if these were the same folks who wrecked at Vulcan Junction a year or 2 ago knocking out those unique X-ing gates. I cringe every time I pass the now Gate-Less Junction.

(of course, if NS has their way, this is probably the last summer for the junction, let alone the gates)

  by chessie8212

What is the plans NS has in store for that junction/line?? I am out of the loop :wink:

  by matt
NS announced last year that they plan to tie the Old Road and the Backside Route together at Vulcan, making one line of the two. The old SW wye would probably be rebuilt for this to happen. The Old Road from Air Line to near Vulcan would then close eliminating the crossings at Douglas and Door and the Backside crossing at Douglas could close as well. Trains from O. Lake in Michigan would operate I believe to and from Gould (if this is still possible, otherwise they must restore the NW wye at Nasby) where they could enter the yard north of the Maumee River, then having access to the NS main. This would eliminate Vulcan Junction completely.

  by chessie8212
Wow... that's quite a plan. Any idea on why they want to do that? I would think that the only benefit to that would be that they could eliminate the crossing on Douglas and therefore not have to worry about tying up the North/South street traffic. Although, according to the map I have of the TTRR, if they ran it to Gould Jct (which I also don't know if a connection is still there), they would have to store the train at the small yard under I-75 by the docks. If they do that, then they would have to run it back up to the Lake Shore Line there by the depot and backtrack to Airline Yard with it when it gets sent out as part of an outbound train. Unless they send those grain cars east I don't see an advantage to that.

If they were to rebuild a connection at Nasby, that would make sense. That would eliminate the train going through Airline Jct. and would allow the train direct access to it's yard track from the leads. If there is no connection at Gould, then it would make more sense, from my view anyway, to build a connection at Nasby.

Also, if this happened, the planned people-mover would be dead. Not that I believe it had much life to begin with, but NS would be much less open about a passenger service on it's rails.

  by nycrick
Gould is still intact in both directions. On Friday 4/23 I saw a lot of MW track equipment at Nasby, some of them went north on the TT using the NW connector. I believe the proper alignment for the old NE connector is now private property.

  by chessie8212
Thanks rick...

So does that mean that NS will operate this train out of that yard under I-75? If it's still going to be operated out of Airline this would seem like a round-about way to do things...

  by nycrick
I don't know what this means. If you look at a map of Toledo there doesn't seem to be any operational logic for reopening Vulcan. The distance from there to Airline is about the same as using the LS&MS. The ex-Wabash Sumner St. Yard is used for grain cars going to/from Anderson's in Maumee and to/from Anderson's Riverfront Terminal. It make no sense to take cars down the TT when going down the "Old Road" thru Airline accomplishes the same thing. But then railroads haven't always operated based on logic!
It would be interesting to know what (if anything) their :wink: plans are. Anybody got "connections" to NS?