I’ve always been an advocate of increased rail use. Unfortunately, most public discussion about trains comes in the form of a negative blitzkrieg attacking the industry after a freight train blasts through a family sedan. I used to think that 98.3 percent of these accidents occurred when some deranged motorist feels the need to prove himself invincible by “racing” the train. I’ve been wrong all along.
Apparently, some drivers suffer from the rare handicap of not being able to see trains at all. That’s right, locomotives, freight cars, passengers, even shiny red cabooses, are all rendered invisible to these poor, unfortunate drivers.
Seriously. Take a look.
This collision took place June 7 in Bonsal, a small town about 16 miles north of Sanford. The train involved was an antique steam locomotive carrying a load of tourists on a short circuit around the town at a blazing 10 mph. The driver of the station wagon — caught totally off guard by his invisitrainitis, despite the fact that the train was almost halfway through the crossing, lights were flashing, bells were ringing, passengers were screaming — was not hurt.