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X-ray machines at train stations in Europe?

X-ray machines at train stations in Europe?

Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 04:31 AM
  #21  
 
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I have never seen an X-ray machine at a European train station. What I do see all the time is armed patrols.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 04:31 AM
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Flanner -

The size of the US makes a useful national train system practically impossible for a coupe of reasons:

Distances involved are huge and flying is very often not only much faster but also much cheaper

Even driving is often faster than the train, since train tracks are not equipped for high speed trains and freight trains (most rails are owned by the freight companies) take precedence over passenger ones (which can often wait on a sideline for hours for freight trains to go buy.

The entire rail system would have to be reconstructed to be any general use - even in the northeast corridor where there are some high speed trains most of the tracks are no able to handle speeds higher than about 60 mph.

(One of the things that must be understood is that Henry Ford made cars almost universal in the US except for the very poor in the 1920s while they were still the provence only of the wealthy or upper middle class in most of the world. Changing that dependence would mean a major change in mind set about convenience.)

The federal government supports airline and roads/infrastructures - not trains - since they serve SO many more people. And most freight is moved by truck.

Only a few cities (NY, Boston, DC, Chicago, SF) have effective local train systems - that is subways or metros in city and suburbs - in some place supplemented by locally supported commuter rail. These are supported by ticket sales plus funding from states and local municipalities - very little from the federal government. And local bus service - except for a similar few cities - is also minimal.

And the necessary expenditure by the federal government to support a real national rail system would be so massive that there is no way it is evr going to happen.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 06:48 AM
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They've had those for years in Spain in some stations for some long distance trains, I think since that problem several years ago where a train was bombed, as I recall (I think the line going south from Madrid). It's no different than the screening at an airport there, you put your bags through it just like you would for your carryons at airports. I think those trains they do that for have very limited stops, some high-speed trains do. Or maybe none for all I recall. I think I encountered one in Barcelona Sants or maybe it was Seville going to Madrid. But there are also ticket checks like with airlines to get past the turnstile, it isn't just anybody can walk onto the train from the quay.

I agree this isn't really feasible for trains that make a lot of stops, although I suppose they think some security is better than nothing and that terrorist would more likely board in big cities than some podunk village a couple hundred miles away.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 06:53 AM
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The primary problem with the public transportation system in the US is not size, but low population density. The densely populated parts of the country do have reasonably good public transportation.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 07:52 AM
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"I have never seen an X-ray machine at a European train station"

The you haven't taken the Eurostar to/from London and you haven't been in some Spanish train stations.

I was in Spain last month.

Atocha station in Madrid, which was the scene of the 2004 bomb attack, had X-ray machines for all luggage on entry, and a ticket check before access to the train - at least for the high speed trains.

Leon, which had a brand new station since I was there in 2004, had a ticket check before access to a second waiting area and the platforms. It also has an X-ray machine, but I don't remember that it was in use when I was there.

Pamplona just checked your ticket and had no X-ray machine. The train I boarded there had started in Barcelona, where there may have been checks.

it is not clear what use a ticket check is for the trains, since unless you are in Preferente class no ID is required to buy one, and if you are buying online I doubt the system can check whether you are lying.

The bus stations in San Sebastian and Burgos had no checks, except, of course, you couldn't board without a ticket.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 08:10 AM
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I think a tourist tax of, say, 20 euros a day will solve all of the financing problems for extra security everywhere.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 09:27 AM
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Last month we took the regional train from Seville to Córdoba and both stations had X Ray machines.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 03:15 PM
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Thank you for all of the input. I don't deny it would be a logistics nightmare to have security on trains, but again, I certainly would be more than happy to arrive early and wait longer to board, if it meant peace of mind.

And Flanner, as Robert said, I don't live in a country the size of yours, so you can't really compare the two. Not to mention the fact that I myself live in the Midwest US, and train travel in this part of the country just isn't going to happen. Too spread out.

Dukey has a good point that trains are probably safer than driving a car. But at least in my car I can control some of the variables. I don't speed. I wear a seatbelt. I don't drive drunk. I generally don't drive after midnight (which is when most of the traumas arrive in the ER where I work), etc. I just feel like if terrorists are announcing to the media that they're going to be targeting trains, we should try to control some of the variables here as well.

And once again, I don't think fear is their goal. I think death and destruction of the "infidel" is their goal.

I'm hoping to see some added security at least in major cities in the coming months. Practical or not, this is the age we live in.

Thanks again to all who have chimed in.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2015, 03:22 PM
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It doesn't matter how many variables you "control" the other idiot can cause an accident if you're driving.

We're all going to die sometime, the trick is to enjoy the time you have. I'm sorry you can't board a train with "peace of mind" without some added security, but I suspect most regular train users are quite happy with the current situation.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 06:45 AM
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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ailway_systems

I rather suspect the number of people killed due to technical faults far exceed terrorist attacks but I can find no data.

I don't think Daesh have declared themselves to be especially anti trains, if anything they seem to have a thing about the outside of football matches and inside of rock concerts.

"if terrorists are announcing to the media that they're going to be targeting trains" you may be right, I must have missed it, what did they say precisely?

Who knew they didn't like Stephenson but do like Benz as they seem to drive to most of their bombing

I suspect the issue is two fold
1) The cause more disruption by bombing one train than one car
2) the governments can appear to stop more attacks by defending one train rather than one car

I'd chill myself. The UK has been under attack by religious groupings all 55 years of my life, if I let it change negatively anything I did I'd be amazed. What it probably makes me do more is to look out for my fellow humans.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 08:14 AM
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I have through X-rays in trainstations in China
It is possible obviously but at short term it is quite nightmarish to organize. Remember the queues we had in all airports following 11 / 9.

Now it goes smoothly : lots of control checks lots of people and yes we probably pay 20 euros when we travel by plane to finance it.

Why not make checks in all train stations ? Would create jobs if no guarantee for safety.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 08:20 AM
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i can create job, switch off all diggers and give all road workers a spoon.....
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 11:32 AM
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"Would create jobs if no guarantee for safety."

For heaven's sake, isn't the ridiculous (not to mention infuriating) TSA security theater enough without inventing another one? But if you live in France maybe you haven't had the pleasure.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 12:19 PM
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It is impossible to have security checks at every station. Many stations are also passages from one part of a town to another, have multiple entrances, and platforms, shops on them restaurants even. Our local station is on a single track railway. The station is unmanned and forms a route from one part of town through to another for pedestrians. There is no building, no barriers. You would need to install two places to check the bags of passengers getting trains four times an hour. Maybe 3 passengers each way during the day, considerably more in the mornings and evenings. It would cost considerably more than €20 a passenger to pay for that, and be a boring job in between trains, making searchers less sharp when they had to check.
The next station down has three tracks. One our local train and two for intercity/international trains. Again it is unmanned and has even more entrances.
Utrecht station forms part of the shopping centre. Does everyone have to go through security just to go shopping?

It is a truly impossible thing to do. And I am grateful for that. I am going to die one day, whether that is in my bed or at the hands of a lunatic I can't say, but until I keel over I refuse to submit myself to even more spurious security checks, or give up more of the freedoms we are supposed to be fighting for.
They have already proved that getting a bomb on a plane is ridiculously easy, despite so called security checks, and that applies not only at third world airports - bombs can be smuggled just as easily as drugs are - and believe me drugs are smuggled on passenger planes daily.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 12:23 PM
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And as I already pointed out -- you don't have to blow up the train, just the tracks to create havoc.

I don't want security checks on trains either. The Eurostar is an exception due to the long underwater tunnel.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 01:34 PM
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If Americans had a proper public transport system and drove properly-maintained cars as competently and unhysterically as we do, the 36,000 people killed on American roads ever year (that's one 9/11 every single month, every single year) would fall by 25,000.>

More drivel from the Cotswold Hill - no more valid an analogy than between using horse-drawn carts and motor cars.

What is the death rate in Scotland per mile driven? That may be a better comparison - an inter-city rail system here just ain't economical feasible (as it seems not to be in Britain which IME for its size and population has the worst train system in Europe - even worse than Spain, a much less densely populated country.

any occasion to attack the U.S. is what flimflanner is up to and we should all take it in good fun but not truth - more jaw flapping - now if we could just harnass that hot air coming out of the Cotswold Hills the whole world could be energy independent.

There have been nearly no trains blown up from inside the train - the Thalys attempt failed - like kerouac says the tracks are more a place to scrutiny and I think there may be more scrutiny of those and undercover security of passengers fitting a certain profile than we think - hopefully!

Can anyone think of a train blown up from inside? Maybe Atocha?
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 01:46 PM
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I have read that the French train system is contemplating some type of luggage checks at major train stations. They might come to the conclusion it isn't helpful, but they are thinking about it.

I've also read that an Italian company has developed a kind of huge bag which can hold up to 20 suitcases, be closed, and then if a bomb goes off in one of the suitcases, it only destroys the other suitcases, nothing beyond. This was developed for luggage holds in planes, but could be used on trains. (Although wouldn't be of any help in the situation where assassins carrying machine guns board a train.)

I'm all for pursuing criminals (and I view terrorists as criminals) but I think if people really don't want obnoxious layers of security then they need to be politically vocal about reframing the response to terrorism in some other than "who is winning?" terms. Once it becomes important "not to let the terrorists win," then politicians are inevitably going to reach for tools that extend the violence and try to build fortresses, and these sorts of responses can be worse than futile. They can fuel more terrorism.

So dropping the "we can't let the terrorists win" and focusing instead on pursuing criminals and understanding what is causing the attraction to terrorism and draining the life from that is more likely to strengthen an open society.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 01:53 PM
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Pal, you have forgotten the London bombings of 2005, when three bombs were detonated on tube trains, and one bomb on a bus. There were 52 killed and over 700 injured.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 02:31 PM
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OK - I thought they were in stations except for the bus. thanks for updating me.
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Old Nov 23rd, 2015, 02:59 PM
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>Can anyone think of a train blown up from inside?

The one in Appennine Base Tunnel in 1984:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Train_904_bombing
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