The numerous recent deaths on Burlington Northern tracks in the South Sound must be addressed by the state Department of Transportation immediately.
It is no surprise that the vast majority of these deaths have been caused by Amtrak trains, which hurtle through our communities daily. Because they are lighter in weight and are allowed to travel through South Sound communities at high speeds they often seem to appear from nowhere.
Please know that when you hear these trains, it will be too late. Cross only at designated crossings, and stay away from the tracks.
It is always easy to place blame on those who have trespassed on the train tracks, but the DOT and train operators bear some responsibility to help ensure the safety of the citizens living near the tracks. There are many communities through which these trains travel at much lower speeds. Why are the South Sound communities not offered the same consideration? Safe pedestrian travel should be afforded across their tracks.
It is obvious that Washington state has not provided its citizens with the safety precautions and education that is needed for safe, high-speed train travel through heavily populated urban areas. Now is the time to immediately suspend high-speed train travel through the South Sound area until the State has taken whatever steps necessary to reduce the number of fatalities.