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November 29 - December 5, 2010

What will it take for the U.S. to address its infrastructure crisis?

Answers Votes
Taking funding from key government programs (Medicare, Social Security) 6%
Raising taxes 19%
Privatizing public structures 22%
The solution awaits an infrastructure disaster. 53%

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Tagged categories: Funding; Government

Comment from Michael Beitzel, (11/29/2010, 9:16 AM)

The infrastructure disaster will visit the privately held railroad structures. They are the oldest and have had the least maintenance due to lack of funds resulting from goverment regulation to protect the long haul trucking industry. Want to talk about some energy savings let the railroads compete on the open market for transportation services.

Comment from James Douthart, (12/2/2010, 12:51 PM)

I do not work for a painting company in Florida. In filling out your previous page there were no options that fit. I am a retired bridge painter for N.H. D.O.T. I was there 30+ years. I now work for Green Mountain Railroad (VT)part time. Fact is, railroads can save us fuel. There will always be a need for trucks. The focus should be on cooperation not competion. I am not a bridge inspector but have worked with all of them in the N.H. D.O.T. from time to time. We,the paint crew, would put spyder stageing under bridges(covered bridges, and truss bridges) that the snooper truck(Servalift)could not reach. The culprit for the truss bridges was salt. It would get all over the bottom cord,panelpoints, the ends of swaybraces and eat them away. Many times, the membrane on the deck had failed and the deck was a "salt sponge" ) in places and oozed salt onto the steel.The brige was OK above the deck. I'm sure none of this is big news to you. I have never seen a RR bridge with a concrete deck. They have been a ballested deck or timbers, and no salt is needed anyway. Even though almost all the RR bridges I have seen have lost almost all of their paint the steel has little or no section loss.(Just by my unofficial visual observation) My crew painted a small girder bridge on the Winnapasaukie(sp?)RR line and Crew 2 Did concrete work and replaced expantion rollers on a trestle for Conway Scenic RR in Crawford Notch. The State of N.H. owns the right of way for these excursion lines . Every time I see a rusty old RR bridge I want to paint it . I agree with Michael Beitzel in that RR should have a bigger role in transportation services. I also understand funds are hard to come by to maintain road bridges too. There is an indian saying (Iriquios I think)" No tree is so foolish to have branches that fight among themselves." What is the answer? hmmm. I don't really know. How about a transportation lottery? Tickets would be bought with proceeds to go to all means of transportation. The winner would get a RR pass, round trip, to anywhere in U.S.A. If there was no way to get there by train,go the rest of the way by bus, taxie, horse and buggy,(couild happen,they have them in Fredric Md. I can see horses out my window now here in VT. pardon me, just dreaming)rental car. The money would go to "worst comes first". That could be those rusty RR bridges. There would have to winners often enough to keep people buying tickets. Just a thought . tell me what you think. thankyou, Jim Douthart

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