Car Vs. Train...And Honey wins!

Saturday April 20th, 2002, Corinth, NY

Mr. Honey and I have just finished having lunch at this neat little place on the Hudson River. I pull out and head down Palmer Ave. We’re gabbing, the music is playing, it’s a beautiful spring-timey day in the Adirondacks. :slight_smile:

I come to an intersection and stop. Within a few seconds, I realize I’m sitting on train tracks, a glance to the left shows a train approaching. Mr. Honey yells to me “Back up, back up!!!” I throw it in reverse and back up, not 3 seconds later the train passes within 5-6 feet of my front bumper. :eek:

Mr. Honey being the even-tempered gentleman that he is, rolls the window down and proceeds to yell at the train “What the F*** are you doing, where’s the signal?, where’s the gate?” The conductor is yelling out the window at us at the same time.

The train comes to a complete stop, in the middle of the intersection and the conductor is leaning out the window with a phone in his hand (My guess is that he’s calling the cops). I throw the car into gear and drive over the tracks around the rear of the train, down every back street in town and I’m outta that town within, oh, I dunno maybe 10 seconds.

What I’d like to know is where is the railroad signal? The barrier? I’d go back to look but I’m too afraid if I drive into that town again I’ll be arrested on the spot.

At the next town down the road, we hide the car behind a rather large Ford pickup and go into the local bar to down a shot of JD.

This is my life, there is literally never a dull moment.

I did something similar.

I was driving on a regular ol’ city road approaching some rarely used railroad tracks. The arm wasn’t down, there were no lights flashing, no bell gonging…nothing. Luckily, I happened to be looking over at my wife and noticed the train. I locked up the brakes just in time to see a terrified engineer pass in front of me.

Scared the living bejesus outta me.


I will admit that I probably wasn’t paying attention but jeesh where’s the warning. Glad to hear that you made it out ok too.


Not all train crossings have signals or gates. The one just down the road from my grandfather’s farm had neither, just a sign. You’re supposed to slow and look both ways before crossing at those.

wow, * please * be careful!!!
There were very active train tracks near my high school and no warning sign and people stopped on them all the time. There were flashing lights and arms that cam down to block traffic, but those are triggered by the train and the stoplights last quite a long time. As everything goes in my hometown, I figured someone had to die before they put up safety precautions. I’m glad you are safe.

DeniseV - I’m normally a very careful driver, I guess I was suffering from an attack of Spring Fever.

jkbelle - I hope no one has to die before they put up some lights or something. I can’t even remember seeing a warning sign.


Honey, I just re-read my post - I didn’t mean to sound accusatory if I did, I was trying to explain the differences in types of railroad crossings. Think of the type with just a sign (and I do hope there was one, at least) as the ‘uncontrolled intersection’ of RR crossings.

I’m surprised that one was in some area other than an extremely rural road, though. Where I live, all railroad crossings, even the pedestrian crossings, have gates, lights, and bells. I would hope that most crossings at least have lights and bells if they see any amount of real traffic.

I thought they were required to blow the horn at every intersection, strictly to avoid this sort of situation. I really wonder what would’ve happened if the cops (or whomever he was calling) had come- I mean, it really doesn’t sound like you did anything illegal.

This is yet another opportunity to reiterate one of my life’s mottoes- “I always yield to anything that outweighs me by two thousand pounds or more.”

No, really, that is actually one of my mottoes. :slight_smile:

DeniseV I didn’t detect an accusatory tone to your post. And I should have been watching where I was going.