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wierdaaron Mar 24, 2014 3:29 PM

In other transit news, the riverwalk construction will require that bridges be kept open for at least a week at a time. http://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20140...dges-be-raised

That should endear downtown drivers to the riverwalk project, I'm sure.

aaron38 Mar 24, 2014 5:17 PM

O'Hare Blue Line crash
 
I've never been in that blue line station, but I've seen the S line in NYC that shuttles back and forth, and ends at a bumper. I'm having a real hard time seeing how that train managed to jump up and over the bumper. Why didn't it just slam to a stop as designed? And how fast was it going to manage that?

Yes, very lucky no one was on those stairs at the time.

CTA Gray Line Mar 24, 2014 7:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aaron38 (Post 6509327)
I've never been in that blue line station, but I've seen the S line in NYC that shuttles back and forth, and ends at a bumper. I'm having a real hard time seeing how that train managed to jump up and over the bumper. Why didn't it just slam to a stop as designed? And how fast was it going to manage that?

Yes, very lucky no one was on those stairs at the time.

Remember there were seven other cars with momentum behind it, pushing it forward: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rt_lu1LLTKo

LouisVanDerWright Mar 24, 2014 7:40 PM

I think the bumper probably did it's job. I don't think they are designed to "stop" a train, but rather to act as a cushion for low speed impacts or to eat up as much momentum as possible in high speed impacts. Deflection is actually just about the best way to absorb a lot of momentum quickly without jarring the object severely. I have a feeling that the bumpers intentionally derail and buck trains at high speed so as to eat up as much energy as possible while not slamming the train to a dead stop.

Imagine how bad the damage would have been if the train hadn't gone up and over the bumper, but had just slammed to a stop like hitting a brick wall? The train would have crumpled like an accordion. This way the bumper sucked up as much momentum as possible and then popped the train up and out of the track bed letting the incline of the stairs/escalators gradually do the rest of the work.

Very fortunate all around that this wasn't a worse accident. I'll be curious to see what they decide the cause was.

MayorOfChicago Mar 24, 2014 8:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aaron38 (Post 6509327)
I've never been in that blue line station, but I've seen the S line in NYC that shuttles back and forth, and ends at a bumper. I'm having a real hard time seeing how that train managed to jump up and over the bumper. Why didn't it just slam to a stop as designed? And how fast was it going to manage that?

Yes, very lucky no one was on those stairs at the time.

I believe the force of it crushed the bumber back and then the train launched upward at a steep angle from the impact and tore off the wheels and everything under the train. It looks like it must have gone up and come back down on the stairs, because those handrails on either side of the stairs are intact and sticking out multiple feet before the start of the stairs/escalators. If it had bounced up and onto the platform and up the stairs it would have probably mashed in the escalators in at their base and certainly ripped out the handrails that stick out. You can almost walk under the train now, I believe it launched up and over the stairs and then slammed back down on them. You can see a pretty heavy "impact" dent on the escalators about halfway up where it seems to have hit and then slid up a few more feet.

Very strange.

Chi-Sky21 Mar 24, 2014 8:05 PM

Do they should have some sort of kill switch/ auto speed reducer at these end of the line stations for the CTA ? Seems like they should.

Busy Bee Mar 24, 2014 8:57 PM

Silver Streak 2?

Chicago_Forever Mar 24, 2014 9:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467 (Post 6508790)
Quality of maintenance, staff, and equipment, over the long term, are additional reasons why just using the existing Blue Line ORD service in lieu of a more premium airport express is a lousy idea.

Today's accident is already being broadcast on BBC's worldwide news - as the train that jumped the escalator. Embarrassing.

Of course such an incident is going to be broadcast all over the news, they always are. Especially if it happens in a place like O'hare. Also, I don't see what's so embarrassing. It's not like the system just fell apart or anything. The funny thing is, when I woke up this morning and saw the pictures on the news, I knew right away it had to be operator error. And just now while watching the news, they mentioned the operator confessing to falling asleep behind the switch. Nothing new here as these incidents happen all the time.

Btw, my two guesses were she was texting or sleeping.

wierdaaron Mar 24, 2014 9:32 PM

2:50AM? Sleeping sounds likely. Three cheers for human controlled transit.

Rizzo Mar 25, 2014 12:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aaron38 (Post 6509327)
I've never been in that blue line station, but I've seen the S line in NYC that shuttles back and forth, and ends at a bumper. I'm having a real hard time seeing how that train managed to jump up and over the bumper. Why didn't it just slam to a stop as designed? And how fast was it going to manage that?

Yes, very lucky no one was on those stairs at the time.

Trains MUST be designed not to slam into the end bumper. Why speed wasn't automatically metered and then abruptly cut before impact is unbelievable to me.

There should be redundant measures. Mechanical and human checks and safety measures in the event an operator falls asleep, is not paying attention or has a heart attack. Similarly an alert operator can reliably stop a train even if the switches malfunction.

Rizzo Mar 25, 2014 12:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chicago_Forever (Post 6509804)
Of course such an incident is going to be broadcast all over the news, they always are. Especially if it happens in a place like O'hare. Also, I don't see what's so embarrassing. It's not like the system just fell apart or anything. The funny thing is, when I woke up this morning and saw the pictures on the news, I knew right away it had to be operator error. And just now while watching the news, they mentioned the operator confessing to falling asleep behind the switch. Nothing new here as these incidents happen all the time.

Btw, my two guesses were she was texting or sleeping.

It's embarrassing and you should really reconsider what you posted. Minor problems can happen....it's a big system. But trains should not crash at end of a line. Now the whole world is wondering why our trains can crash at their terminus and whether the CTA will be successful at correcting this serious problem so that passengers can have confidence in the system.

Via Chicago Mar 25, 2014 2:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hayward (Post 6510177)
Trains MUST be designed not to slam into the end bumper. Why speed wasn't automatically metered and then abruptly cut before impact is unbelievable to me.

There should be redundant measures. Mechanical and human checks and safety measures in the event an operator falls asleep, is not paying attention or has a heart attack. Similarly an alert operator can reliably stop a train even if the switches malfunction.

yea this is pretty troubling esp. when considering the driverless blue line train that went through two supposed failsafe switches last year

Chicago_Forever Mar 25, 2014 2:35 AM

^Yes, the driverless incident was embarrassing but like I said, a driver falling asleep at the switch is not something I'd consider embarrassing. We hear similar stories about these operators texting and falling asleep at the switch all the time. As a matter of fact, back in December of last yr one of NY's trains derailed killing 4 and injuring more 60 and the driver was also reported to be dozing off in that accident. We should just be thankful this happened really early in the morning, before the morning rush and that no one was killed or seriously injured.

Chi-Sky21 Mar 25, 2014 2:40 AM

What IS embarrassing is that we do not have sufficient systems to prevent something like this. Put some tracking chips in every car. If 2 pass by a sensor mounted near the entrance of a terminus too quickly, trigger autobreaking. There, problem solved.

ardecila Mar 25, 2014 2:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Via Chicago (Post 6510295)
yea this is pretty troubling esp. when considering the driverless blue line train that went through two supposed failsafe switches last year

Yes, these two incidents on the Blue Line have really made the CTA look bad.

On the other hand, we haven't had any accidents as deadly as the DC Metro. :shrug:

Rizzo Mar 25, 2014 7:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chicago_Forever (Post 6510322)
^Yes, the driverless incident was embarrassing but like I said, a driver falling asleep at the switch is not something I'd consider embarrassing. We hear similar stories about these operators texting and falling asleep at the switch all the time. As a matter of fact, back in December of last yr one of NY's trains derailed killing 4 and injuring more 60 and the driver was also reported to be dozing off in that accident. We should just be thankful this happened really early in the morning, before the morning rush and that no one was killed or seriously injured.

The driver may be part of it, but do your really think human error could be the only factor responsible for this mess? I agree that human error is common but maybe we're not seeing the situation the same where I believe the majority of the blame is mechanical. Either these systems existed and didn't work, or don't exist and should have been in place at a critical piece of city infrastructure. A train crash at one of the busiest airports in North America does not help our image.

electricron Mar 25, 2014 7:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chi-Sky21 (Post 6510330)
What IS embarrassing is that we do not have sufficient systems to prevent something like this. Put some tracking chips in every car. If 2 pass by a sensor mounted near the entrance of a terminus too quickly, trigger autobreaking. There, problem solved.

Problem is only solved if the brakes are working properly. If not - you'll still have the crash. It's not always as simple as you think.

Chi-Sky21 Mar 25, 2014 2:01 PM

I was only trying to solve the driverless problem. Breaks are not my specialty. 8) My point is, it is high time some of these technologies are incorporated into these cars. Anyone know if the new cars CTA just purchased have any new safety systems like that?

N830MH Mar 25, 2014 5:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chicago_Forever (Post 6510322)
^Yes, the driverless incident was embarrassing but like I said, a driver falling asleep at the switch is not something I'd consider embarrassing. We hear similar stories about these operators texting and falling asleep at the switch all the time. As a matter of fact, back in December of last yr one of NY's trains derailed killing 4 and injuring more 60 and the driver was also reported to be dozing off in that accident. We should just be thankful this happened really early in the morning, before the morning rush and that no one was killed or seriously injured.

Yeah, he can't be texting & driving. It's against the law. He is not allow to use texting during work hours. He should know better! He's breaking the law. Don't try to sleep on the job. He have to stay barely awake. What a shame! He have try to drink the coffee. It will help to stay awake.

left of center Mar 25, 2014 10:53 PM

Embarrassing. Honestly, things like this will continue to happen until the cars are upgraded with more safety features, and ultimately once driverless trains become the norm (which isn't too far off, as even driverless cars are only a decade or so away).

Randomguy34 Mar 25, 2014 11:18 PM

^I remember reading an article on how the MTA is currently testing driverless trains right now. Too bad I can't find the link for it anymore.

ardecila Mar 26, 2014 12:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by left of center (Post 6511706)
Embarrassing. Honestly, things like this will continue to happen until the cars are upgraded with more safety features, and ultimately once driverless trains become the norm (which isn't too far off, as even driverless cars are only a decade or so away).

It already is the norm. Most cities starting from scratch with a metro system are going automated. BART was one of the early adopters but in the last 15 years we've seen Copenhagen, Vancouver, Honolulu, etc all start driverless systems.

The challenge is in older systems with all sorts of weird idiosyncrasies, but Paris is one of the most eccentric metro systems and they're slowly converting.

CTA Gray Line Mar 26, 2014 4:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6511871)
It already is the norm. Most cities starting from scratch with a metro system are going automated. BART was one of the early adopters but in the last 15 years we've seen Copenhagen, Vancouver, Honolulu, etc all start driverless systems.

The challenge is in older systems with all sorts of weird idiosyncrasies, but Paris is one of the most eccentric metro systems and they're slowly converting.


http://voices.suntimes.com/news/brea...re-derailment/

Nexis4Jersey Mar 26, 2014 5:33 AM

Video Link

Chi-Sky21 Mar 26, 2014 1:13 PM

Ok , i read in one of the articles these trains DO HAVE auto breaking/stopping systems for a terminus like this. Looks like they may need to look into that, pretty sure this is not how it is supposed to work!

chicagopcclcar1 Mar 28, 2014 5:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chi-Sky21 (Post 6512400)
Ok , i read in one of the articles these trains DO HAVE auto breaking/stopping systems for a terminus like this. Looks like they may need to look into that, pretty sure this is not how it is supposed to work!

Our CTA "L" cars/trains do definitely have auto braking/stopping systems for a terminus like this, and, on all main tracks systemwide.

At interlocking junctions where track switches cross, there are wayside signals with track trips that will stop a train that disobeys signals or the route is not correct.

The cab signal gives both a consideration of the track ahead and a speed limit and the operator has only 2.5 seconds to react or the train goes into emergency.

The control handle must be held down, if released, the train goes into emergency.

Unfortunately, no system is 100 percent. Our train evidently handled speed changes from 55 mph to 35 mph to 25 mph between the former station and O'Hare. The routes through switches, through two separate interlocking were lined. The "dead man" was not activated. There wasn't enough space to stop a 25 mph train.

CTA Gray Line Mar 29, 2014 4:35 AM

Blue Line operator worked extra hours before crash
 
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...,2087026.story


By Juan Perez Jr.
Tribune reporter
5:41 p.m. CDT, March 28, 2014

The operator of the CTA train that jumped a platform and climbed an escalator at O’Hare International Airport had worked many additional hours in the week before Monday’s crash, the rail union chief said today, saying the agency’s way of scheduling workers needs to be changed..........

N830MH Mar 29, 2014 5:32 AM

How those people to get it back to downtown Chicago? Is O'Hare station will be closed. They will take on shuttle bus to other station. O'Hare station will have to be fixed.

F1 Tommy Mar 29, 2014 2:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by N830MH (Post 6517325)
How those people to get it back to downtown Chicago? Is O'Hare station will be closed. They will take on shuttle bus to other station. O'Hare station will have to be fixed.


They will have to take a shuttle bus to the next station. We have not had that many delays due to this for passengers and workers so it must be working well.

Funny how the union releases information about the crash and when the city does the same to refute their information the union calls them out on it. She had 18 hours off before the shift with the crash according to the CTA. The driver it seems screwed up and should be fired even if mechanical problems also are found to have contributed after an investigation is completed. The driver caused the accident it seems and the safe guards failed. They could file criminal charges also if negligence is found just like they do with private companies(trucking, airlines ect).

chrisvfr800i Mar 29, 2014 3:34 PM

CTA trains have two independent braking systems: Dynamic Braking, which involves resistance from the electric motors, and "Track" braking, which involves brake pads pressing on the rails. Track brakes are an emergency system, and I'd remember it if they were used while you were riding. Neither of these systems are worth a crap if the motorman..(motorperson)..is sawing logs in the cab!!

Human error, as usual, is the cause here!

ardecila Mar 29, 2014 4:26 PM

Ultimately though I think CTA needs to take most of the liability for this even if motorman error was to blame. CTA hired and trained the motorman (motorperson) and CTA as an employer is responsible for the actions of their employees in the course of performing their jobs.

Not only that, but it wouldn't be fair or even practical to hold motormen totally responsible for negligence, at least not in a civil court. They don't have enough resources for injured passengers to recover.

F1 Tommy Mar 29, 2014 4:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6517611)
Ultimately though I think CTA needs to take most of the liability for this even if motorman error was to blame. CTA hired and trained the motorman (motorperson) and CTA as an employer is responsible for the actions of their employees in the course of performing their jobs.

Not only that, but it wouldn't be fair or even practical to hold motormen totally responsible for negligence, at least not in a civil court. They don't have enough resources for injured passengers to recover.

Agreed, but that option is available and some lawyer will take it up no doubt. If she did not pass the drug test for any reason they will have a field day!!

ardecila Mar 29, 2014 4:56 PM

The lawyer will undoubtedly sue the CTA as well as the driver, because the driver isn't worth anything and it's a waste of time for the lawyer to pursue her meager assets. You can't squeeze blood from a turnip.

N830MH Mar 30, 2014 11:18 PM

Hi All,

O'Hare station is reopens again. YAY!! They already repair the damage by last week.

Now you can take on Blue Line from O'Hare station. You don't have wait for shuttle bus at the baggage claim.

Ch.G, Ch.G Mar 31, 2014 2:37 AM

I would like to take a moment of silence to mourn the closing of the Des Plaines oasis. Also, how long ago was it rebuilt/renovated/whatever?

ardecila Mar 31, 2014 4:50 AM

Kevin? Is that you?

Quote:

Man Conceived At Des Plaines Oasis Stages One-Man Protest Of Closure
March 14, 2014 10:39 AM

A 21-year-old Crystal Lake man staged a one-man protest Friday morning over the permanent closing this weekend of the Des Plaines Oasis along the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway. The reason will do doubt come as a surprise.

Kevin Walters chained himself to the door of the oasis, and said to understand why, you have to go back more than two decades.

“It is a weird story, I must admit. About 21 years ago, my parents were at a Phil Collins concert here in Chicago, and one thing led to another. They ended up at the oasis … and I was conceived there,” he said.

Ch.G, Ch.G Mar 31, 2014 8:42 AM

I wish my origin story were that awesome.

chrisvfr800i Mar 31, 2014 1:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by N830MH (Post 6519007)
Hi All,

O'Hare station is reopens again. YAY!! They already repair the damage by last week.

Now you can take on Blue Line from O'Hare station. You don't have wait for shuttle bus at the baggage claim.

Knowing the CTA, that wooden stairway will remain in place for a minimum of two years.

CTA Gray Line Apr 1, 2014 1:42 AM

Task force: Eliminate RTA, merge CTA, Pace and Metra
 
http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?sec...ois&id=9486413

Sarah Schulte

More: Bio, Facebook, News Team

March 31, 2014 (CHICAGO) (WLS) -- The controversy over political clout at Metra may result in a transformation of how mass transit is run in the Chicago area.

Governor Pat Quinn's task force offered its plan for changing the bureaucracy on Monday...........

BVictor1 Apr 2, 2014 5:45 AM

I was in my car (03/31/14) and snapped these images of steel being erected for the new station being built at Cermak for the green line.

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a4...D720/ry%3D480/

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a4...D720/ry%3D480/

CTA Gray Line Apr 2, 2014 6:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BVictor1 (Post 6522648)
I was in my car (03/31/14) and snapped these images of steel being erected for the new station being built at Cermak for the green line.

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a4...D720/ry%3D480/

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a4...D720/ry%3D480/

The new Cermak Rd./McCormick Place Station at about 32 E. Cermak - just West of the White Castle (on THIS side of the Golden Gate Bridge), serving McCormick Place - on King Dr. at 400 E. (on the OTHER side of the Golden Gate Bridge).

Right at the door!

LouisVanDerWright Apr 3, 2014 5:18 PM

Looks like Rahm is not a big fan of the idea of combining CTA, PACE, and Metra:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/p...,2595022.story

chiguy123 Apr 3, 2014 6:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LouisVanDerWright (Post 6524878)
Looks like Rahm is not a big fan of the idea of combining CTA, PACE, and Metra:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/p...,2595022.story

Can we just let everything be combined and rebrand all transportation things Divvy blue? How cool would that be? The inside of the newer L trains are that color and I don't think it's a coincidence...thanks Gabe Klein. :notacrook:

Transit Plans Apr 3, 2014 11:56 PM

Today is a very big day for the future of Chicago transit as today is the day that CNT and ATA launch Transit Future

http://transitfuture.files.wordpress...pg?w=620&h=327

It already has significant political backing from major players around the city including Cook County Commissioners, Labor Groups, Businesses, and Community + Civic Organizations. No solid funding mechanism yet but with enough public support that might change fast!

Randomguy34 Apr 4, 2014 12:57 AM

This better not be some cruel late April Fools joke you're pulling.

ardecila Apr 4, 2014 1:05 AM

Thanks for the link. It's bold but I think it's politically weird. Why would all of Cook County tax itself to extend the Blue Line out to Oakbrook or Itasca in DuPage County?

Moreover, what's in it for the suburbs? A bunch of ART bus lines that connect one strip mall to the next? Improvements to Metra are almost completely left out of this proposal, even though the network is vast and only needs a few billion to become truly regional.

Transit Plans Apr 4, 2014 1:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randomguy34 (Post 6525498)
This better not be some cruel late April Fools joke you're pulling.

Thankfully nope, this is a legitimate effort at getting some kind of dedicated funding flowing. They even got Antonio Villaraigosa to come and stump for it!
Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6525501)
Thanks for the link. It's bold but I think it's politically weird. Why would all of Cook County tax itself to extend the Blue Line out to Oakbrook or Itasca in DuPage County?

Moreover, what's in it for the suburbs? A bunch of ART bus lines that connect one strip mall to the next? Improvements to Metra are almost completely left out of this proposal, even though the network is vast and only needs a few billion to become truly regional.

Yeah it's probably going to be a hard sell for the suburbs outside of the Blue line/Southeast line. We might even see those axed by the time shovels are in the ground but it's better than not even suggesting them in the first place.

CTA Gray Line Apr 4, 2014 5:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Transit Plans (Post 6525444)
Today is a very big day for the future of Chicago transit as today is the day that CNT and ATA launch Transit Future

http://transitfuture.files.wordpress...pg?w=620&h=327

It already has significant political backing from major players around the city including Cook County Commissioners, Labor Groups, Businesses, and Community + Civic Organizations. No solid funding mechanism yet but with enough public support that might change fast!

I like the "South Lakefront Service" with two branches -- it "could run on existing train tracks"!

guesswho Apr 4, 2014 1:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6525501)
Thanks for the link. It's bold but I think it's politically weird. Why would all of Cook County tax itself to extend the Blue Line out to Oakbrook or Itasca in DuPage County?

Agreed. Even though this is just a vision, if it ever came to a reality, Oak Brook would fight like hell against it, even if there was a correlating higher sales tax figure at Oakbrook Center which is their main revenue source. I think the population of Oak Brook would not want a logical public transit route out from the City to their front doorstep (usually gated and guarded :yes:), as they would bring the higher crime argument to the table immediately.

I think Itasca and Yorktown Center (Lombard) might welcome it actually.....but DuPage County, if asked, would need to levy a higher tax (sales, new, etc.), and since this is touching so very little of DuPage County, if there was a referendum for approval, I bet the vast majority of votes would not approve.

And I disagree with the argument the Transit Today website makes that job centers like Naperville and Oak Brook are denying impoverished neighborhoods like the South and West sides jobs, simply because there is not a CTA connection. Those job centers attract mainly college educated/highly educated individuals, not those living in the South/West sides who are less statistically likely to hold bachelors/advanced degrees needed for employers in Oak Brook and Naperville corporate centers.

I love the idea of an O'Hare to Midway transit connection. Hopefully it would connect with METRA stations that would allow me to take the train from Hinsdale to "Station X" further east, then hop on the new airport line up to O'Hare or down to Midway.

I find it odd that the site has a "Make a Donation" link......

UPChicago Apr 4, 2014 2:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by guesswho (Post 6525980)

I love the idea of an O'Hare to Midway transit connection.

Logged on to post this!


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