Friday, July 26, 2013

Unnecessary and Avoidable High Speed Train Accident in Northwest France.

It appears that the conductor of the High Speed Train that derailed in Northwest Spain was going more than twice the recommended speed on the turn that caused the train to derail. Apparently the conductor was somewhat of a "Speed Junkie" who had actually bragged on Facebook about how fast he was traveling on prior runs.

What I don't understand is why wouldn't the train's black box recorder from prior runs have sent warning flags whenever the conductor was over speeding by more than a certain percentage?

I just don't think it's the conductor's fault. He's been a conductor for 30 years. He probably started pushing the speed up years ago, maybe a mile an hour or two every week.

It wouldn't take but more than a year or two to suddenly be so far over the speed limit to boggle the mind. And, with no one saying no or warning the conductor, he simply continued to raise the mph ante.

What is the point of having a black box recorder if it cannot detect overspeeding? 

There are two critical failure issues that cannot be easily explained away. Were there no override systems in place that could detect dramatic over speeding and simply automatically slow down the train?  But more troubling than that, were there no warnings being sent to a human being that the conductor was over speeding in his prior runs?

Perhaps most troubling of all, if the conductor was over speeding dramatically, wasn't anybody noticing that he was arriving at his next scheduled destinations way too soon?

If the Conductor is going twice the recommended speed around curves, and we can assume is also going faster than recommended on the straightways, wasn't the black box / computer logging his average speed and then sending out a warning to someone else within the company?

The worst thing we can all do is blame the conductor. I blame a company that sees itself as too big to fail and to busy to be bothered by actual factual data that was being recorded by their black boxes.

Are black boxes only looked at AFTER a tragedy?  Really?  Can't black boxes also transmit data whenever the operation of a vehicle is out of known compliance standards?

I blame the operations people more than a conductor who simply trusted his train based on past performances. 

Sad to see this is how this company performs crash tests using real people instead of dummies.

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