Letters to the Editor

LETTERS: Resounding success of the past

The steam whistle of the Royal Hudson – seen in a 2010 visit – is preferred to today’s horns, writes Edward Rubin. - File photo
The steam whistle of the Royal Hudson – seen in a 2010 visit – is preferred to today’s horns, writes Edward Rubin.
— image credit: File photo

Editor:

Re: Train horns easy to quell, April 1 letters.

Sigh, again with the train noise problems.

Actually, I remember this problem discussed at a presentation of sound reproduction back in the mid-’60s at Vancouver City College.

The problem with train warnings was that with the end of steam-engine use came the end of steam whistles. The romantic “onward sound of the outward bound” whooo whooo whoo-whooo of trains on tracks became the honk honk honk-honk of road-driven trucks.

This mistake caused an upsurge in correlations with trains. People didn’t realize it was a train on the tracks, not a truck on the road.

Obviously, it would be too much to expect railroads to include a least one steam engine on each and every train, even just a small one with the sole use of producing steam for a whistle.

But what they can do is record with the excellent equipment available today the sound of a real steam whistle and play that. Everybody likes that sound and knows what it stands for. Problem solved.

Oh, about trains passing through White Rock and Crescent Beach? Raise the tracks on trestles.

Trestle blocking the view? Build it with clear Plexiglas.

Edward Rubin, Surrey

 

 

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