From govcalif@21:1/5 to Silas Warner on Sun Jan 15 06:21:31 2023
    On Friday, July 28, 2000 at 12:00:00 AM UTC-7, Silas Warner wrote:
    ALCOGG1 wrote:

    I recently visited my aunt in Long Isand, she lives close to the LIRR and
    I saw the third rail RR running through suburban neighborhoods.
    Would this not be more dangerous than catenary since it is so close to the ground?
    Today, third rail would never be used unless the track were thoroughly
    fenced off. But unfenced third rail was common in the interurban days,
    and still survives in some places like Chicago on the Ravenswood line
    and Philadelphia on the Norristown line.
    In these places the third rail itself is covered by an insulating hood.
    This means that simply stepping on the third rail won't cause a current
    flow. In order to actually touch the third rail, you have to reach into
    the gap between hood and rail. In the old days, this was an acceptable
    risk. Nowadays, this situation, along with a lawyer and an idipt,
    would result in a hospitalized idiot, a lawyer with a mansion in Aspen
    and a bankrupt railroad.
    Silas Warner
    RIP Silas.

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