Editor, Times-Union:

I lived next to a railroad tracks for about 35 or so years and over the years there have been fires along the tracks due to railroad cars hot boxes (wheel bears out of grease). I can say that it is very easy to tell when these wheels get dry of grease you can hear them for close to a 1/2 mile away coming and going.

It seems that for approximately in the last five or years there are a lot more trains going and coming that have wheels screeching that need greased. I make a suggestion that all train cars should be checked on a regular basis.

Another suggestion is to put heat detectors between Warsaw and Claypool. It is only but a matter of time before there will be another hotbox or a derailment. There are a lot of tank cars going in both directions. Whether these are soybean oil or corn oil, it is anyone's guess, but there are also a lot of chemical cars as well.

When I'm working in the gardens I enjoy watching the trains go by, sometimes I can count as many as 50 tankers and if I'm close to the tracks I can see warning labels on the sides of the tanker cars. I don't see these on soybean oil or corn oil, only on the chemical ones. And as I've already said, I hear the wheels on these cars screeching just as I do on others as well. The longer the trains are and when the engineers are inside and they have the windows shut because of the hot or cold weather, I have to wonder just how much of these screeching wheels they hear. They would have to have a hard time when these trains are very close to a mile or longer.

Anyway, Mr. Editor just wondering, but wondering doesn't prevent  accidents, or do they?

Marvin Gunter

Warsaw, via email