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People are just not paying attention. They are too busy with their smart phones and forgot to think. Look at what's happening to Baseball and the foul ball screening for the fans protection. People used to be vigilant and watch for the balls on the first base line.
I second the suggestion to bring back the horns.
There's a couple of crossings on the peninsula that could use something along the lines of the one in the photo from Germany. Whipple and Broadway specifically.
Level crossing in Germany with an egg-shaped radar sensor for detecting obstacles on the crossing:
This style of crossing gate, common in the UK & Ireland, will help separate people from trains, but maybe not those determined to kill themselves:
Hear hear, John.
Indeed it is Michael.
I lived adjacent to JPBX and across the street from it in Sunnyvale and Burlingame respectively. Here In Chicago, Metra runs about a mile away. They all have their share of tragedies, accidental and intentional, but life goes on.
Imo: The recent SMART tragedies appear to be clustered. That should give a clue. If an area of the ROW could be secured it should be the G.C. Dr. north through Hearn area. It could be surveilled by cameras, fixed and aloft. If there are people living on the ROW, they need to be removed. I believe that collision mitigation strategies must be explored, identified and deployed to protect the crew and passengers; I picture a giant airbag covering the front of the cab. Those are the sorts of things the railroad is equipped to do or should be. They are not designed, staffed or in any way prepared to solve a "public health crisis", as far as I know.
The cities/counties could think about removing the quiet zones, but these idiots also can't stand the sound of train horns.
There's nothing SMART can do. You can't fix stupidity. The crossing signals work. The lights flash. The bells ring. The arms descend. It's damn clear when you're not supposed to walk across the tracks. It's up to people to not be fucking stupid. Every accidental pedestrian death is one less mentally unfit person able to spread their seed.
This is a problem with every transit agency. If someone is dead set on taking a life, then they will. I am of belief that transit systems that are run frequently should be separated from public. With 63 grade crossing in such a short area, that only makes the NWP more dangerous as a commuter line. Its too late for smart to redesign and I feel they need to live with the risks. I personally think these systems need to be elevated, underground or between the freeways.
"they can literally sneak up on people.“You can’t hear the train un... That one is easy. Stay off of the tracks and look both ways if you cross. The train is not 'sneaky", honestly... anyway, that's an Operation Lifesaver issue.
As far as those who intentionally disregard safety with their own peril as a goal, I agree with: "if the only way to keep people off the tracks is to solve homelessness and mental illness, Chevron worker McNaughton says this may be a problem that is too big for a transit agency to solve. Good luck to ‘em,” he said. “I don’t know what they’re going to do…I really don’t.”
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