Negligent Driver Tries to Take an Early Trip on Expo


Exactly what it looks like. Photo: Gökhan Esirgen

By now, many of you have seen the pictures that Gökhan Esirgen took of a car sitting on the Expo tracks at the station of Exposition Boulevard and Vermont Avenue that appeared on the Transit Coalition forum Tuesday evening.  A quick call to the Expo Construction Authority confirmed that the picture shows exactly what people thought it showed, a distracted driver actually took a left onto the Expo tracks.

The Authority was quick to point out the signs and other markings which clearly state that cars do not belong on train tracks, perhaps spooked by all the attention given to the on-street crossings for Expo. While my photo library for the station doesn’t show the signs, I was mostly looking at the bike lanes which ran parallel to the station not crossing it, I do remember the signage being pretty clear about what was happening.

But in the end, all the signage, gates and safety devices in the world don’t amount to much if a negligent driver is determined to cause havoc.  In this case, the damage was minimal.  The car stopped before it could do any real damage to the tracks and testing resumed later on Tuesday afternoon.

  • Anonymous

    Calgary has a special car-trapping pit with raised rail at each end of 7th Avenue South to prevent this sort of thing.  Maybe LA Metro needs to install some?

  • Angelenos aren’t the quickest to pick up on new ideas… driver probably wondered what this newfangled road made out of rails was… a “rail-road”, if you will.

  • Anonymous

    You mean the line there that has been in place since 1875?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Los_Angeles_and_Independence_Railroad

  • It was sarcasm, the idea being that this rather well-established idea still befuddles the driving public around these parts.

  • Allthumb2

    From the photo, the person turned into the station and made it all the way to the end, probably only noticing once the paved track portion ran out and they dropped into the ballast.  This is at least 100′, if not more.

    Any bets that this person was on their cell phone?

  • Davistrain

    I could mention that just because transit advocates and railfans have been following this project closely, doesn’t mean that more typical Angelenos know or care anything about it.

  • Alexander the Great

    What a complete bonehead (the driver of this car). Too bad his car wasn’t damaged.
    And, I thinkk, the car would do only minimal (if any) damage to steel rails and reinforced concrete ties, than the opposite. The lunatic driver deservers to receive a juicy citation for doing such a stupid thing.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Review: The Expo Phase II Bike Path Is Going to Be Great…

|
…if they ever finish it. Advocates for a bicycle path to run parallel to the recently-opened Phase II of the Expo Light Rail Line have long contended that the Exposition Construction Authority viewed the fully-funded separated bike path as an afterthought. Maybe they were right. The bike path, which officially opened with the rail line […]

Government as Advocates: Expo Construction Authority Wants Your Comments to CPUC

|
The Expo Construction Authority is anxious to stop history from repeating itself. When clearances for the first phase of the Expo Line appeared all but certain, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), a regulatory agency which regulates privately owned public utilities in the state of California, including electric power, telecommunications, natural gas and water companies, […]

Westsiders Vent at Last Night’s Expo Meeting

|
  Last night the Expo Construction Authority held a community meeting in the Vista Del Mar Child and Family Services Gymnasium, right in the heart of a community that has historically been opposed to construction of Phase II of the Expo Line.  As expected, it was hard to find a supporter of extending light rail […]

A Photo Essay of a Tour of Expo Phase II

|
When Stephen Villavaso, known to many Streetsblog readers as the volunteer traffic engineer who makes CicLAvia possible, asked me if I would like to ride along on a tour of Expo Phase II construction, I jumped at the chance. Villavaso is also one of the engineers working for Skanska-Rados Joint Venture – the design-build contractor […]

The 2nd Annual Alt Car Expo

|
StreetHeat took its first field trip this weekend to the 2007 Alternative Energy and Transportation Expo in Santa Monica. While I was wowed by cars that get 100 miles per gallon and bikes that do some of the pedaling for you…what was most important for this blogger was a chance to start meeting some folks […]