Above

Above

LETTERS: White Rock railing over orders

Editor:

Re: City livid over waterfront barricade, June 12; BNSF to close West Beach waterfront railing gaps, May 27.

Editor:

Re: City livid over waterfront barricade, June 12; BNSF to close West Beach waterfront railing gaps, May 27.

Should we put up fences around everything that could be dangerous?

We moved to White Rock less than a year ago because of the beautiful situation by the ocean, the beautiful beaches and the great sea wall for long walks. It’s a very European feel to this city that we love, and so do tourists.

A big, ugly fence will definitely destroy this feeling and keep people from this special city.

If we are going to put up fences around everything that could be dangerous, we need to put fences around lakes, rivers, cliffs, roads, etc.

People do get killed in all those places, after all.

Instead, let us teach our children about possible dangers and mature people need to lead by example.

An easy solution to keep people aware would be to install red lights that will flash when a train is coming. If we can both hear and see these trains, nobody can say they weren’t warned.

We need to be able to get to our beaches.

Gunilla Lindgren, White Rock

• • •

What is with all the craziness in barricading off the beach access and railroad tracks?

Honestly, they do not barricade and put up fences along the sides of roadways and, guess what, people manage every day to survive. However, if you choose to walk down the middle of the road or cross the street without looking both ways you may get hit, same as crossing railroad tracks! So what the heck is going on?

Krystene Harvey, Surrey

• • •

As a new resident of White Rock I can’t help but find the railway debate akin to a Monty Python skit.

I grew up with a very busy – 60-plus trains a day – CNR line at the bottom of our field. The only time I recall anyone being injured by a train was when teenagers were playing on slow moving trains and fell off and broke an arm or leg. Never once did those trains leave the tracks to run into vehicles or pedestrians.

As a regular walker of the West Vancouver sea wall in and along Ambleside Beach I noticed there are several streets crossing the railway tracks, pedestrian-only railroad crossings, a park, a beach, a children’s playground, tennis courts, two piers, a boat launch, art galleries, a dog park, waterfront sea-wall walk and free parking. I don’t recall any problem with “railway safety.”

Nor do I see a never-ending debate about rail safety in the North Shore News. Could it be that the residents of Canada’s richest postal code are that much smarter that they have enough good sense to watch for trains when walking on or near railroad tracks?

Don MacKay, White Rock

 

Not a sound solution for rail safety

Editor:

It appears from BNSF’s reply to my email to them that it is Transport Canada that insists on loud honking every few seconds over the half-mile stretch along the White Rock beach area – even at 2 a.m. – so I will deal with the Canadian authorities with this issue in future.

A passenger train makes its presence known Tuesday in West Beach. I sincerely appreciate BNSF’s prompt response to my inquiry, because no one else seems to care about our quality of life along this beautiful beachfront community and especially the Marine Drive residents, the entire hillside and uptown areas of our wonderful “City by the Sea.”

When will sanity prevail?

If I drove through town honking my car horn every two seconds, I’m sure I would be charged with disturbing the peace.

Kevin Floyd, White Rock

• • •

For the last nine years my family and I have made our dream home on the hillside of idyllic White Rock. Before we built, we lived in the old cottage for about four months – doing our due diligence – to see if we would be happy in this environment. That was long before the coal and oil trains wreaked havoc with our lives.

Now, with the latest edict from Transport Canada requiring the trains to blow their whistles for the full length of the promenade from dawn to dusk, I am further distressed.

However, some of the engineers seem not to know the difference between a.m. and p.m. In the early morning hours of last Saturday, a train woke me from a deep sleep. This, in itself, is not at all unusual. However, the fact that it continued to blow its whistle the full length of the promenade on a cold rainy morning made me think the engineer was a sadistic individual. He is certainly not gaining any brownie points for BNSF and he is not following the directive from Transport Canada, and he is certainly creating health problems for me with sleep deprivation.

I implore BNSF to have some consideration for the health of White Rock residents and not ignore the serious health problems caused by sleep deprivation – it reminds me of waterboarding torture, thankfully not to such a drastic degree.

Susan Potzold, White Rock

• • •

So Transport Canada now decided to block off our beaches just before summer with virtually no warning? That seems rather strange to me, since our elected city officials have been in negotiations with them since last year – after the death of the jogger – to increase the safety at the waterfront.

Surely our officials must have known what Transport Canada’s intentions were before they proceeded. If not, it seems rather sudden and secretive for Transport Canada to do what they did, which has not only now increased our safety risks at the beach, but will also drive away our tourists due to the inconveniences they have caused, and hence effect our waterfront businesses negatively.

I have also heard the trains blowing their horns late at night and in the early morning hours, and can tell you that I have been down at the beach during those times, and in most instances there is usually no one in sight as far as the eye can see, yet the conductors are still blowing their horns down the beach and beyond. Perhaps the problem lies more with the conductors and not with dangers ahead.

I suspect these conductors may just be somewhat over-cautious in their duties, and sounding their horns is the only solution, so perhaps they should be monitored more and the problem would resolve itself.

Why can they not use bells, rather than horns, in the early-morning hours and late evenings, so as to not disturb others for miles around? Bells were used years ago on trains rather than horns which worked out quite well, and probably used so they would not disturb the right to quiet enjoyment of others.

Cheryl Berti, White Rock

• • •

The federal bureaucrats employed to regulate railroads don’t seem to bother themselves about safe operation, what cargoes are carried, how and when they are carried, or with ensuring equipment and roadbed are adequately designed and effectively maintained.

In terms of train speed and frequency along our beaches, railroads are permitted to treat a sunny Sunday afternoon in July exactly the same as a rainy night in November, regardless of the relative risks of killing people.

Whatever their job descriptions, the bureaucrats don’t appear to be thinking in terms of regulating railroads. Their solution is that when people are harmed or killed, regulate the victims.

If people going back and forth to their beach are killed by trains, then fence off the beach. If ear-shattering train horns can warn people of oncoming trains, then blow those horns constantly to the point where people hear nothing else. Never mind about waking up tens of thousands, night after night after night, for no reason whatever.

Ronald Chisholm, Surrey

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey Eagles forward Michael Abgrall had two goals and two assists in a pair of weekend victories. (Damon James photo)
Surrey Eagles’ offence soars in pair of lopsided victories

BC Hockey League squad scores 22 goals in two wins over Powell River, Coquitlam

A youngster goes hunting for trash on a Surrey sidewalk. (Submitted photo: City of Surrey)
Anniedale school in 1899 with teacher Jessie Inglis, left, and students Hugh Gillis, Harry Latta, Fred Williams, Horatio Hodder, Fraser Latta, Margaret Hodder, Robert Hodder, Annie Gillis and Mary Hodder. (Photo courtesy Surrey Archives)
SURREY NOW & THEN: Old Anniedale schoolhouse closed twice due to pandemic, moved twice

A weekly look back at Surrey-area landmark sites and events

Delta character - and former White Rock resident - Pansy May Stuttard inspects a loaded revolver in the cover photo for Jim Dwight and Gary Cullen’s fascinating biography, Lord don’t want me Devil won’t take me. Contributed photo
West Coast’s ‘Pistol-packin’ Pansy’ lives on in colourful biography

Infamous Delta character ended her days in White Rock and South Surrey

In this image from NASA, NASA’s experimental Mars helicopter Ingenuity lands on the surface of Mars Monday, April 19, 2021. The little 4-pound helicopter rose from the dusty red surface into the thin Martian air Monday, achieving the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (NASA via AP)
VIDEO: NASA’s Mars helicopter takes flight, 1st for another planet

The $85 million helicopter demo was considered high risk, yet high reward

New figures show Canadian housing prices outpacing those in other developed countries. (Black Press Media file photo)
Canadian housing prices fastest rising in the world

Relative to 2000, housing prices have risen by a factor of more than 2.5

Russ Ball (left) and some of the team show off the specimen after they were able to remove it Friday. Photo supplied
80-million-year-old turtle find on B.C. river exciting fossil hunters

Remains of two-foot creature of undetermined species will now make its home at the Royal BC Museum

Large gatherings of people at Kitsilano Beach on Saturday, April 17, 2021. (Walter Wells/Twitter)
Vancouver police to reassess enforcement of COVID rules at outdoor parties: mayor

No tickets were given out for a large outdoor party at Kitsilano Beach

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Joudelie King wants to get out and live life to the fullest, but there are places she can’t go because they don’t meet her accessibility needs. (submitted photo)
New online tool provides accessibility map for people with disabilities

The myCommunity BC map provides accessibility info for nearly 1,000 locations in the province

British Columbia’s provincial flag flies in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Wildfire fanned by winds near Merritt prompts evacuation alert

BC Wildfire Service says the suspected human-caused blaze was fanned by winds

The Rogers logo is photographed in Toronto on Monday, September 30, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tijana Martin
Rogers investigating after wireless customers complain of widespread outage

According to Down Detector, problems are being reported in most major Canadian cities

Flow Academy is located at 1511 Sutherland Avenue in Kelowna. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
National fitness group condemns unlicensed Kelowna gym’s anti-vaccine policy

The Fitness Industry Council of Canada says Flow Academy is shining a negative light on the industry

Most Read