Trains For America

More choices for better transportation

First, kill all the railfans. LA Times column questions role of teen hobbyists in Metrolink crash

Before somebody notifies Homeland Security, the headline is a play on a line from Shakespeare. 

Scott Gold has a column in the Los Angeles Times which deals with the great national menace of rail hobbyists. Now, I do not chase trains, but I will admit that when I am taking pictures of trains I lose 30 IQ points. Some railfans are nuts and some railroads are nuts in their persecution of employees who might lean toward that behavior.

It’s mostly harmless, but Gold describes it as a culture unparalleled except, perhaps, by al Queda. Here is the link. Take a deep breath and we could open a  discussion thread. Leave a comment if you like. 

For myself, it is almost as if a bunch of teenage kids with an odd hobby is being held responsible for a terrible tragedy> How convenient an excuse to overlook the engineer’s probably state of exhaustion.

It is also a clever play to dismiss including rail options in serious discussions of transportation policy. Lord knows, all of Europe must be run by railfans. 

What say you?

Filed under: Amtrak, Passenger Rail Politics, Passenger Rail Transportatio Policy, Regional USA Passenger Rail

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October 2008