Welcome to an occasional-but-hopefully-more-frequent series where I drag myself out of bed early and read the local news so you don’t have to.
From the NTSB hearings on the June 22 Red Line Crash:
Yesterday’s testimony dealt with the crashworthiness of the 1000 series cars, and their impending replacement (if 2013 can be called “impending) with new 7000 series cars with a stainless steel body that’s more resistant to crumpling on impact. That’s old news. What came out of the hearings that was new was that the manufacturer of Metro’s signaling equipment, Alstom, warned Metro in 2004 and 2006 about the dangers of mixing third-party equipment in with their Alstom equipment. The equipment from other manufacturers has higher power requirements than the Alstom devices and may have caused the signaling failure that led to the crash.
City government hijinx:
DC Government is going to be doing a study on land use for three blocks in either direction of the 37 proposed miles of streetcar track they’re busily laying down. It’ll study the usual transit-oriented development issues, but they’ll also be studying how to power the cars without running afoul of the “no wires” laws in the parts of the city governed by L’Enfant’s original plan. The problem, of course, is that they’ve already started laying down tracks on H Street and in Anacostia, and the H Street corridor is one of the areas where they’ll run into the wire restrictions. Council Member Vincent Gray (At Large) is justifiably exasperated by the fact that DC DoT is already laying own track for streetcars that no one is exactly sure how to power yet.
The City Paper’s Mike Debonis examines the enormous upcoming city budget deficits and their possible effect on the coinciding mayoral race. When 80% of the budget is spent on police, education, health and human services, and debt service, someone’s going to have to put on the big-boy pants and make the hard choices. But then that someone’s going to get stuck explaining why police and schools are getting cut.
If only half smokes could be delivered by direct message:
Ben’s Chili Bowl is now on Twitter. I don’t know what they’re going to do with it, but I don’t care. Gimme a chili half smoke.