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Text-messaging Beauty Queen Hit by Train

Discussion in 'The OT' started by Nick, Mar 15, 2006.

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  1. Nick

    Nick Retired, part-time PITA DBSTalk Club

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    Apr 23, 2002
    The...
    CNN) -- Deaf beauty contest winner Tara McAvoy was walking along the railroad tracks from
    her Austin, Texas, home to her mother's workplace, text-messaging family and friends, when
    a train struck and killed her, according to the Austin Police Department.

    A Massachusetts-born Texan, who liked to quote "Don't mess with Texas," the 18-year-old was
    going to represent the Lone Star State at the Miss Deaf America Pageant in Palm Desert,
    California, this July.

    It was one of many pageants McAvoy had entered, "both in the hearing community and in the
    deaf community," said Claire Bugen, superintendent of the Texas School for the Deaf, on
    Wednesday. McAvoy was a 2005 graduate of the school, where she played sports and acted
    in theater.

    "She was a beautiful, bright, young deaf woman," said Bugen.

    More at CNN
     
  2. invaliduser88

    invaliduser88 Welcome to Torchwood DBSTalk Gold Club

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    Important safety rule. If your deaf, it's not a good idea to walk near railroad tracks.
     
  3. JM Anthony

    JM Anthony Child of the 60's DBSTalk Gold Club

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    Even if you're not deaf, it's not a good idea.
     
  4. Bogy

    Bogy Hall Of Fame

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    I'm surprised she couldn't feel the vibration.
     
  5. invaliduser88

    invaliduser88 Welcome to Torchwood DBSTalk Gold Club

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    She was too busy text messaging.
     
  6. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Kittrell, NC
    The article has some quotes about that... stating that the vibration is something of a myth, that train tracks do not necessarily vibrate.

    'Course even if they did, this girl was supposedly not actually on the tracks anyway, but walking off to the side... and was caught by the front "scoop" of the train that overhangs outside the width of the track... so she couldn't have felt the vibrations if there were any.

    I feel sorry for the girl and her parents/family/friends... but I have to wonder why she would knowingly be walking that close to the tracks. I wouldn't do it and I could hear a train coming... I certainly wouldn't do it if I couldn't hear.
     
  7. JM Anthony

    JM Anthony Child of the 60's DBSTalk Gold Club

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    We have train track close to some of our busiest parks. No less often than every couple of years, some gets struck and usually killed. The Seattle Parks Dept. got sued a few years back because they didn't have any fencing (but there were plenty of signs) to help with the clueless out there. They ended up settling for $1.25 big ones.
     
  8. jonstad

    jonstad Hall Of Fame

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    The Milwaukee Road Hiawatha used to run past my house at 75 mph, and would top 90 on other stretches, taking at least a full mile for an emergency stop.

    If you've ever witnessed a train blasting by at 75 mph, you should have a very healthy respect for these behemoths. Even a freight train lumbering by at a liesurely 35-40 mph is pretty intimidating anywhere within 50 feet of the tracks. The ground shakes, the noise is deafening, and it creates it's own vortex of whirlwinds! All in all a pretty awesome spectacle.

    When I was about 8 a man was killed by the Hiawatha in front of my house. Blood and guts were strewn out over that full mile it took to stop. I recall seeing what looked like a hip and part of a thigh before my dad pulled me away from the scene. It took about five hours to clean up the mess, and even then, for months you'd occasionally see what looked like the odd tooth or bone fragment they missed. It was assumed a suicide as no one could comprehend how the person couldn't have seen, heard or felt the oncoming locomotive.

    I would walk the tracks home sometimes as it was a stright line with no hills leading from town three miles away. But I would always be looking over my shoulder and be well off the tracks, well before the train passed.

    Anyone, even a deaf person, without enough respect for a moving train to be aware of their surroundings when walking on railroad tracks either wants to be hit by a train, or is very very stupid.

    Incidents like this are very sad but are 100% preventable. If you wouldn't cross the street before checking for traffic, you shouldn't walk down railroad tracks without constantly checking to see where the trains are!
     
  9. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I think this is a key point here.

    Think about this... How many people walk down the middle of a road/street when there are no cars coming? Even if you look both ways and don't see cars coming, most people aren't going to just walk down the middle of the road... the sane ones of us stay well off the side of the road and then keep looking just to be sure someone isn't off the road on the way towards us.

    I have to think a train is most easily avoided by being nowhere near the tracks and/or constantly looking both ways as you walk so it can't sneak up on you. Text messaging or reading a book while walking doesn't seem the best use of concentration in those circumstances.

    I often think about this when I see a jogger running along the side of the road with a radio on... Sure, cars aren't supposed to hit people and are supposed to drive just on the road... but if I were a person outside running I don't think I'd just want to assume no one would hit me and block off my ears to the sound of oncoming traffic.
     
  10. Bogy

    Bogy Hall Of Fame

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    I don't know, we used to have a train track running just past our backyard. It was not very active, but a clay processing plant was just a little way down the line. It was no long active, but had lots of the processed clay in storage, and a train would still come to pick up a load about once a month. Even at the low speeds they traveled, you could hear and FEEL them coming.

    One of my funerals in my first church was for a profoundly deaf man who drove in front of a train. He was in a hurry because he was late to a friend's funeral. Wintertime, windows closed, mostly deaf, he evidently never heard the whistle.

    While I certainly have sympathy for the family and friends of this girl, I also have great sympathy for the Engineer driving the train. There is nothing they can do in these instances, and it is a devastating experience for them. It can take a train well over a mile to stop.
     
  11. djlong

    djlong Hall Of Fame

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    I have a rail yard that is 200 yards PLUS A RIVER away from me and *I* feel the vibrations when they're doing switching operations!
     
  12. ntexasdude

    ntexasdude Hall Of Fame

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    Massive 120 car coal trains pass by my office 5 or 6 times a day. I can feel every single one.
     
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