Why does LPD need a blog?

This is why.

Asst. Chief LePere realized he had experience and information about the CSX story that he could share with the public….so he posted it. No need to send out a press release, or wait for a reporter’s call. He just added helpful information to the discourse.

The gist of the post was pertinent Lakeland code regarding train delays. I’ll quote a bit here:

The City of Lakeland Code, Section 70-9, “Blockage of intersections by railroad”, regulates the following (paraphrased for brevity):

* A train standing still cannot block an intersection for more than five minutes.
* A moving train with a maximum length of 65 cars, not counting engine and caboose, cannot block an intersection for more than five minutes.
* A moving train with a maximum length of 100, not counting the engine and caboose, cannot block an intersection for more than 10 minutes.
* A moving train in excess of 100 cars, (you guessed it – not counting engine and caboose), cannot block an intersection for more than 15 minutes.

Who remembers solving word problems in Math? 100 cars moving by a driver in 10 minutes means the train is moving how fast?

Wait. You need to know the length of the cars. According to CSX, a boxcar can be 55′ 5″ to 67′ 7″. (665 inches to 811 inches – 1476″ to give us a midpoint of 738″ or 61′ 5″) Let’s say 62′ to include couplings. Pretend the caboose and engine are the same size. They don’t count, so we don’t care about them. So, 100 cars at 62′ is 6200 or about 920 feet over a mile. In other words, the train is about 1.174 miles long.

Confused?

For a mile long train to pass by you in one minute it would have to move 60mph. For a mile long train to pass by you in 10 minutes it would move at least 6 mph.

A train 1.174 miles long would need to go 70.44 mph to pass you in one minute. It only needs to travel about 7 mph to pass you in 10 minutes.

I’m sure those trains can travel faster than 7 mph.

How fast do they travel? Well, in October 2006 U.S. Senator Charles Schumer “urged the Federal Railroad Administration to conduct a safety assessment” after the Norfolk Southern Corporation increased freight train speed from 30 mph to 50 mph.

At 50 mph our 1.174 mile train would take about about a minute and 24 seconds to pass by.

At 30 mph it should roll past at about 2 mins 21 seconds.

Could someone please check my math? I won’t say how long it’s been since I had a math class.

4 thoughts on “Why does LPD need a blog?

  1. Sure the trains can travel faster than that, but trains often need to stand still for periods of time — when adding or dropping cars, sitting on sidetracks to permit other trains to pass going in the other direction, etc. At such times the average speed of the train is going to be a whole lot less than the maximum permissible. Thus, the lower limits.

  2. Sure the trains can travel faster than that, but trains often need to stand still for periods of time — when adding or dropping cars, sitting on sidetracks to permit other trains to pass going in the other direction, etc. At such times the average speed of the train is going to be a whole lot less than the maximum permissible. Thus, the lower limits.

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