Discussion re:safety

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2004: October: Oct 23-04: Discussion re:safety
Today's Pasty Cam picture raised some concerns, and brought some reactions to the reactions.

By Marie Detroit, Wa on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 09:47 am:

Oh my gosh are these active tracks? Do not ever encourage anyone to walk on or along active tracks. Do not even make it look attractive. Trains can not stop quickly and despite their size are quiet and can sneak up on you. Please everyone encourage your children to stay away. Think of a railroad as a highway. Thank you

By Nate on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 09:54 am:

Yes those are active tracks. My wife and I visited that spot one time, and I said "come on, lets walk across the bridge." She said, "I don't know doesn't seem safe." We decided not to walk across the bridge, and started walking back towards the car. About 15 seconds after deciding not to walk across the bridge a train came through. It was a little creepy. There are a few spots on that bridge where you could get out of the way in case of a train, but it would be a pretty tense situation if I had to get on one of those.

By Therese from just south of the bridge on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 10:52 am:

I lost an art history instructor to a rail bridge -- Deborah Brown from UM in Ann Arbor. She used it as a shortcut across the Huron River and one day the train met her half way across. I lived for years two blocks from busy train crossings near Detroit, and saw many people killed walking on the tracks and driving around gates. It gave me great respect for what a train can do to a frail human body. Please, everyone, keep your kids off the tracks, and you keep off, too! And don't trust to knowing when the train is due: they don't necessarily keep to a close schedule, and one running a few minutes early or late will catch you by surprise in a very difficult area.

By Down State Dave on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 11:14 am:

Yeah, yeah, and wear your seat belt and your bike helmet and your knee guards. Don't ride in the back of a pick-up truck. And so on and so forth.
Yeah, yeah, all good advice I know. But this old codger still remembers doing the same thing this young lad is doing and still remembers the stark terror of my brother yelling "RUN, there's a train coming!" and then getting to the end of the trestle to see my brother and his buddies laughing hysterically and saying "Just kidding, there won't be a train till tomorrow."

OK, ok, I'll shutup before I get a discussion started that Charlie has to move to another page. ;>)

Aladino -- GREAT PICTURE! Another one of those shots that tells a story and invokes all kinds of emotions and memories without say a word. Thanks for sharing!

By Pathfinder, Minnesota on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 11:26 am:

Have to concur with Down State Dave, sometimes this safety thing goes to extremes. Can fondly recall being a kid in the 50's----placing pennies on top of the track along the Great Northern line---with contests between various 'buddies' as to which penny ended up getting 'squished' "longest"!

By Capt. Paul in Nevada on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:01 pm:

I'm just thinking back upon my childhood. All those times I layed pennies on the train tracks, all the times I walked along the tracks, rode my bike without a helmet, rode in the back of pickup trucks, rode in my Father's Landcruiser with no doors, played with my Red Rider bb gun, played with all the toys that are now considered choking hazards, and so on......

I'm amazed that I'm still alive to talk about my wonderful childhood memories with all these dangers to society lurking about ;-)

By Railwalker - IL on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:19 pm:

" I Take My Chances "
By Mary Chapin Carpenter
I took a walk in the rain one day, on the wrong side of the tracks.
I stood on the rail till I saw that train, just to see how my heart would react.
Now some people say that you should`nt tempt fate, and for them I cannot disagree.
But I never learned nothing from playing it safe, I say fate should not tempt me.

By Surprised. on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:20 pm:

Aladino - beautiful picture, but I, like Marie from Detoit, WA
agree. This was not an appropriate picture for pasty.com to
highlight due to the fact it makes something very dangerous
look so attractive. For a "kid-friendly" website, I am very
suprised this picture was chosen as the pic of the day. I'll be
making sure my kids do not see this picture.

By Gordy, IL on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:26 pm:

I work for a railroad, this picture gives me the willies, people should not be out on bridges. That track is private property and people have no business out there. I can't even walk out on a bridge without some kind of authority to be there. I could get fired or fined by the Federal government.
To many people die for no reason walking on railroad tracks. I can't believe an adult would allow a child out on a bridge. Just because you have a couple of places to get out of the way, doesn't mean you will go there in a panic.

By LS&I Grandson on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:28 pm:

Dead River Trestle
Lake Superior & Ishpeming Railroad
Maquette, Mi.
You won't catch me up there at any time.
Better to view from the banks, especially when a ore train's coming across.
Good picture tho' :o)

By LS&I Grandson on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:28 pm:

Make that Marquette, Mi.

By not Bubble Wrapped on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:30 pm:

One of the features that I often point out to visitors upon going up Mt.Brockway, is the lack of guard rails. Someone finally gives us enough credit to not drive off the edge, unless that is, we're suicidal.

We also survived eating an undercooked hamburger on occasion, and heaven knows I was bitten by every critter I ever caught in the woods; gardner snakes, chipmunks, squirrels, voles. Had a baby bat with a broken wing that I splinted with an ice cream stick, until it could fly away. Two critters that I did chicken out against, a baby barn owl that had fallen out of a tree,(did you know they loudly click their beaks together when threatened?) and a baby ground hog, that I managed to temporarily keep from fleeing. He rolled on his back with his shiney teeth glaring, and as bad as I wanted a baby groundhog, I elected to take a pass.

By Pete - Mud Lake on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:48 pm:

Some of you folks ought to live a little.
As for me , I`m going to walk that RR trestle,
Drunk, blindfolded, loaded gun in one hand, cigarette in the other, in my slick soled city shoes.

By Scott.Wi on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 12:52 pm:

Common sense is great in life but
we are becoming too risk adverse.
My niece looks like a road warrior just
to ride her bike. Helmet,elbow pads,no shorts.
She could play hockey instead of riding in the

By Ahmeek Cliff Dweller on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 01:01 pm:

The photo reminds me of the movie, Stand By Me. Lets give the parents/godparents/relatives of this curious boy a bit of credit; I doubt they would put their child in harms' way.

By k, up, mi on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 01:02 pm:

Just another controversial topic for Pasty.

By Marsha, Genesee/Aura on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 01:49 pm:

To not Bubble-Wrapped: When is the movie of your life coming out?

By Robert Townsend, Houghton, MI on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 01:56 pm:

We've become a nation of whiners. After every well publicized tragic event an 800 number will appear for those traumatized enough to feel the need to speak to a counselor who's standing by. Kids and adults who take stupid risks do at their own peril!

By definitely not, Bubble Wrapped on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 02:37 pm:


I was a nerdy loner kid that spent all day after school in the woods. Wanted to be a Vet, but ended up as a glue chemist (close?).

You don't want to know about the chemicals I've worked with since the late 50's ... and I still color, outside the lines -

By Mr. Bill on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 02:44 pm:

Talk about protecting our citizens from themselves?

We've got two surfers in wet suits trying to get out into Bete Grise in a fetching SE surf, that's been pounding since last night.

Now I've seen everything!

By moi on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 02:59 pm:

Controversy, in small amounts, makes life interesting. How dull to only follow other's rules and pretend everything is just lovely. We become sheep that way. A lively conversation is fun! This page is fun to read when random thoughts come through and are debated. The old "Keweenaw Issues" was fun. It got changed to a more complicated format, so now people sound off here. THis one is for photos...is there a page for debate?

By Alan, Kansas City, MO on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 04:07 pm:

I have to add my two cents. Sorry. Shocked at today's photo. Couldn't believe it.

Stay off the tracks. It's the train you don't hear, that doesn't give you time to get away, is the one that'll get you. And, yes, it is possible. Bad things do happen to good people.

I understand and respect both sides of the discussion, though. That aside, I am betting there was a "No Trespassing" sign somewhere.

By Ol' Curmudgeon on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 04:23 pm:

My but it seems we can't enjoy the photo today without input from a bunch of self-appointed nannies! How did we ever survive our childhood?

By donewithpastycamfortoday on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 04:27 pm:

Some of you didn't survive childhood.

". . . wouldn't put their child in harms way." Seems like they not only did, but have photographic evidence of it.

". . . too risk averse." Acceptable risk, maybe. This isn't.

By Marsha, Genesee/Aura on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 05:48 pm:

I don't remember ever seeing so much conversation on a Saturday! Charlie, try to enjoy your vacation. I like the picture. Reminds me of Huck Finn. And, no, I wouldn't have let my kids do that, but I like the picture anyway. My son would've found a way out there when he was old enough to be away from my watchful eye. (He's now 34.)

By Techie'88, DeWitt,MI on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 05:38 pm:

Great Stuff for today's messages. I love to hear about railroads & boats.. And Tech scoring and being up 7-0... It is great to see the RR photo and without getting all bent out of shape about it I have to say that was not a smart thing to do. As a railfan who uses every precaution to make sure not to cause a problem for the railroad it is best to stay away from the tracks. It is ok to watch and photograph but Railroads have enough to deal with in trying to keep the public safe without having to deal with those who violate the law and tresspass on their property. It would have been better to see a photo where you didn't present a problem for the LS & I and actually photographed one of their trains without being a hazard to them. As for the FRANTZ thanks for the great photos RCW. That is a photo that comes only so often and for those of us who like to see that lift bridge go up for a classic straightdecker conversion to a self unloader that is great. Hey DOWN STATE DAVE thanks for letting everyone know about boatnerd... That is a cool site..

By PJ - IL on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 06:04 pm:

You moms would not believe what us sons did
when we were out from under your watchful gaze!

By Acceptable risk on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 07:09 pm:

Poor child could get hit in the head by a meteor out there on the trestle like that with no helmet on!! Shame on you.

By Hobo on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 07:18 pm:

I'm sure the lad on the bridge is in good hands. It looks like he is not too far onto the trestle. The trains are quite noisy and will give you an advance warning. Nothing like the chances I took when I was a lad.

By Albert,Ma on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 07:28 pm:

yeah back in the day they didn't have trains.

By Gertrude,Ca on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 07:31 pm:

If a train came you could always jump off the bridge!

By Ben on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 07:37 pm:

Albert Ma. Whos your mama?

By Skylar in Wi on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 08:07 pm:

The things that my brothers and I did as kids, makes me shiver, now that I have a daughter of my own. If my mom only knew the kind of things we were doing. Going out on thin ice on the swamps, rock climbing down in the ravine, putting rocks on the train tracks behind the house. Jumping trains, and then jumping off at the edge of town. ( One guy we knew didn't jump in time, he ended up in LaCrosse. )Man, what fun!! To be 12 again! We are so overly protective we don't let our 9 year old walk the 3 blocks from school to grandpa and grandma's house. How times have changed, and I'm only 36. Later, Skylar.

By darrell oinas/Saint Johns Michigan on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 08:11 pm:

Make's me sad to think that some people just can't enjoy a great photo, I know lets ban trains because somone might get hurt and lets get the trial lawyers in on it they need more money for the yearly tropical vacation. Jeez people its just a photo.

By Marcy/Arizona on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 08:50 pm:

WOW, just got off work and checked in on the discussion for today and it`s what my husband has been saying for a long about all this " SAFTEY FIRST " not that we are against safety by any means! but, we are becoming a very paranoid society and turning into nervous wrecks! we need to get back to enjoying life ( we do not need to be careless with our actions)and not be scared over every step we take! I`m sure the parents were the ones taking the photo and are aware of how dangerous trains can be!

By did ya hear the one about the guy on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 09:09 pm:

did ya hear about the guy in Wisconsin who was in his wheelchair giving a.. "gesture" to the passing train..
He lived near the track and was upset by the constant horns. The train side tank clipped his wheel chair and he went flying{not hurt badly}
Umm.. he was in the wheelchair because years earlier he had a train vs car wreck!

By NMU, class of 80 on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 09:22 pm:

Back in my college days, we use to hike out there all the time, had a friend get caught out there when a train came by, he hugged that platform for all he was worth, after the train passed we had to go help him off there, he was as white as a sheet. It's really a beautiful area, but very dangerous! Ahh what memories!

By owwee on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 09:21 pm:

Gee it did happen
man in chair hit by train


By MG, Ellsworth, MI on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 10:12 pm:

Anybody ever walk across the trestle over the Red Ridge Dam? I did it a few years back. I'm a little older (forty one) and a little wiser now, but that doesn't mean I wouldn't do it again. Takeing a risk, without being stupid doing it, now and than keeps life interesting. And playing it safe doesn't garentee you'll live any longer than those taking risks. You just won't have any great stories to tell.

By P.V. on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 10:15 pm:

I think I'm going to color outside the lines AFTER I take a walk with Pete from Mud Lake :)

By DB on Saturday, October 23, 2004 - 10:21 pm:


By Bobt, Michigan on Sunday, October 24, 2004 - 01:42 am:

Rregarding the railrosd trestles.

Just to remind all. The USA railroads are all within the railroad "right-of-way", which means, if you are on a railroad track in the USA, you are on the railroad "right-of way", which means you are trespassing. There are are not enough signs in the universe to post for all "attractive nuisance" locations on railroad property in the world. Just stay off the tracks, including bridges.

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