Low-ground clearance railroad crossings - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Towing and Hitching
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 03-09-2017, 12:23 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Area 51, New Mexico
Trailer: pondering.....
Posts: 728
Low-ground clearance railroad crossings

Reading about the recent Bus- Train accident in Mississippi and wondering...anybody ever have an issue pulling an RV trailer and having a problem with these type "Low-ground clearance" or "hump" railroad crossings? Apparently there are about 30+ of these type crossings in Texas and many more nationwide.

__________________

freespirit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 12:27 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
gbaglo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: North Vancouver, British Columbia
Trailer: 2009 Escape 17B - "Toad". '08 Toyota RAV4 V6
Posts: 13,781
So many things to worry about.
__________________

__________________
2009 Escape 17B "Toad"
2008 Toyota RAV4 V6 Sport
North Vancouver, British Columbia

What happens to the hole when the cheese is gone?
- Bertolt Brecht
gbaglo is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 12:33 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
KarenH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Bellingham and Glacier, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 15A
Posts: 1,981
Send a message via Skype™ to KarenH
The only problem I've had is having to stop behind a second set of tracks because of truck+trailer length ("Don't stop on RR tracks") and not triggering the signals.
__________________
Karen Hulford
2013 Escape 15A, "Egbert"
Ford 150 XLT 5.8L
Bellingham, Washington
KarenH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 01:58 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
float5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Denison, Texas
Trailer: 2015 21'; 2011 19' sold; 4Runner; ph ninezero3 327-27ninefour
Posts: 5,156
I guess I could say that we are in "train city" in Texas, founded by the railroad, and while one might need to be careful at crossings, I do not know that there is that problem. I will look for it. What we do see much of is dips in the roads, all over the place. They are definitely a problem. Have seen that in New Mexico and elsewhere also.
__________________
Cathy. Floating Cloud
"Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.... "
Emerson
float5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 02:04 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 11,933
Quote:
Originally Posted by freespirit View Post
...anybody ever have an issue pulling an RV trailer and having a problem with these type "Low-ground clearance" or "hump" railroad crossings?
No... although I haven't seen one so severe that it needed a warning sign.

The issue here is breakover angle. I've never had an issue with this (on railway crossings, speed bumps, driveway entrances, campsites, or anything else); it seems that departure angle is the more common challenge - either the hitch or the trailer bumper drags.

I think it's only likely to be an issue with the style of trailer shown in the sign: long distance from hitch to trailer wheels (such as a semi-trailer) combined with low trailer clearance (so the illustration shows a low-boy). Buses are obviously long (from axle to axle), and the ground clearance under the middle of highway coaches with their baggage compartments is quite low. Escape-sized travel trailers are low, but not very long (from hitch or tug axle, to trailer axle).


I saw part of a TV news item about a bus-train collision, but hadn't realized that the bus was stuck on the tracks until this discussion suggested that and I looked it up. The news reports said Main Street in Biloxi, so I looked at that in Google Street View... and it has one of those signs. With the tug's wheels and the trailer's wheels each a couple of metres from the track (on each side), I don't see enough slope to look like a problem, but I can see how some trucks and that charter bus might have difficulty.
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 08:34 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: North of Hertel, Wisconsin
Trailer: TBD
Posts: 2,148
Quote:
Originally Posted by freespirit View Post
Reading about the recent Bus- Train accident in Mississippi and wondering...anybody ever have an issue pulling an RV trailer and having a problem with these type "Low-ground clearance" or "hump" railroad crossings? Apparently there are about 30+ of these type crossings in Texas and many more nationwide.

Simple answer " Avoid Texas" , which is what we plan on doing until they get this crisis resolved . No sense in taking unnecessary chances when you can avoid the problem entirely. There are still 49 other states to visit , so why worry.
steve dunham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 09:33 AM   #7
Site Team
 
rbryan4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Canyon Lake, Texas
Trailer: 2015 19 "Past Tents", 2018 F150 2.7L Ecoboost
Posts: 9,479
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Simple answer " Avoid Texas" , which is what we plan on doing until they get this crisis resolved . No sense in taking unnecessary chances when you can avoid the problem entirely. There are still 49 other states to visit , so why worry.
Seriously? These type of crossings probably exist in all 50 states. Why would you avoid traveling in a state where you have perhaps a one-in-a-thousand chance of encountering such a crossing? We've traveled all over the southwest, and have yet to encounter one that was a problem.

If you don't want to travel in Texas, or Oklahoma, or Mississippi, or wherever, that's great, but I wouldn't use the existence of a low ground clearance crossing as a deciding factor.
__________________
"You can't buy happiness, but you can buy an RV. And that is pretty close."
rbryan4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 09:43 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: North of Hertel, Wisconsin
Trailer: TBD
Posts: 2,148
Quote:
Originally Posted by rbryan4 View Post
Seriously? These type of crossings probably exist in all 50 states. Why would you avoid traveling in a state where you have perhaps a one-in-a-thousand chance of encountering such a crossing? We've traveled all over the southwest, and have yet to encounter one that was a problem.

If you don't want to travel in Texas, or Oklahoma, or Mississippi, or wherever, that's great, but I wouldn't use the existence of a low ground clearance crossing as a deciding factor.
The issue with the railroad crossings is "A" deciding factor not
"THE" deciding factor. It is more a ,been there , done that , no reason to do it / see it again thing. We really liked Georgia.
steve dunham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 09:50 AM   #9
Site Team
 
rbryan4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Canyon Lake, Texas
Trailer: 2015 19 "Past Tents", 2018 F150 2.7L Ecoboost
Posts: 9,479
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
The issue with the railroad crossings is "A" deciding factor not
"THE" deciding factor. It is more a ,been there , done that , no reason to do it / see it again thing. We really liked Georgia.
OK, that I understand. Once you've seen a place (and I grant you, Texas isn't the most scenic despite its size) you may want to explore someplace new instead.

My comment was specifically about the idea of avoiding a state because of such a hazard. Since there are road hazards across the country, that'd be pretty limiting.
__________________
"You can't buy happiness, but you can buy an RV. And that is pretty close."
rbryan4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 09:54 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
azjack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Tucson, AZ, Arizona
Trailer: gone, 19 and 21 & now we have 17B
Posts: 598
low ground clearance

If my trailer hangs up, I'll step on the gas pedal if a train is headed my way and I'll pull it clear. I love the big engines.
Jack
azjack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 10:00 AM   #11
Senior Member
 
Jim Bennett's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 14,220
To me it seems like we are trying to create an issue where there really isn't one. One the very rare occasion that it should occur, I would hope common sense would play out.

Seriously, this has never been a consideration of mine, and likely never will. Just one man's opinion.
__________________
2017 Escape 5.0 TA
2015 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5L EcoBoost
2009 Escape 19 (previous)
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” — Abraham Lincoln
Jim Bennett is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 10:04 AM   #12
Senior Member
 
Iowa Dave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Benton County, Iowa
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 Classic Number 6, pulled by 2018 Toyota Highlander
Posts: 4,335
The steel ribbon

We have lived in railroad towns and crossed thousands of sets of tracks. As Brian stated, the problem described occurs when there is too much distance from the pivot point to the rear wheels like the sign shows involving the " Lo Boy" trailer. One caution that is for sure valid is to make sure the trailer jack post is completely retracted. Even gas station driveways can be a problem let alone railroad tracks. Of course your exterior checklist, if followed before towing will prevent this. As old Dad always said " Easy does it".
Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 12:25 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
float5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Denison, Texas
Trailer: 2015 21'; 2011 19' sold; 4Runner; ph ninezero3 327-27ninefour
Posts: 5,156
Quote:
Originally Posted by rbryan4 View Post
OK, that I understand. Once you've seen a place (and I grant you, Texas isn't the most scenic despite its size) you may want to explore someplace new instead.

My comment was specifically about the idea of avoiding a state because of such a hazard. Since there are road hazards across the country, that'd be pretty limiting.
I took it that someone was kidding since that situation is likely somewhere in just about every state. I do not expect to have it with our little short trailers.
__________________
Cathy. Floating Cloud
"Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.... "
Emerson
float5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 02:11 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
escape artist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: St. Thomas not BVI., Ontario
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0TA / 2016 Ram Eco Diesel 4X4
Posts: 6,231
Hi: All... Just read the news that a tour bus in Biloxi Miss. grounded out on a rail crossing. The bus was struck by a train killing at least 4 seniors on their way to a Casino. Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
__________________
Quote Bugs Bunny..."Don't take life too seriously, none of us get out of it ALIVE"!!!
'16 Ram Eco D. 4X4 Laramie Longhorn CC & '14 Escape 5.0TA
St.Thomas (Not the Virgin Islands) Ontario
escape artist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 03:28 PM   #15
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Lubbock, Texas
Trailer: None
Posts: 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Simple answer " Avoid Texas" , which is what we plan on doing until they get this crisis resolved . No sense in taking unnecessary chances when you can avoid the problem entirely. There are still 49 other states to visit , so why worry.
Couple of things: 1) 2 of the 4 people killed were high school friends of my wife. 2) Texas has a ton of these kind of crossings, but they are usually found where ancillary roads enter a major highway and have to cross a RR track (eg: coming out of oil fields or ranch country). I do not recall ever seeing a crossing on a regular road/street with enough rise to be of concern. I have had problems with dragging the rear of a 24' travel trailer going up inclines into parking lots, entrances to places, etc.
__________________
Jim Joplin
806-789-8545
jejoplin@gmail.com
JimJoplin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 03:40 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
escape artist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: St. Thomas not BVI., Ontario
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0TA / 2016 Ram Eco Diesel 4X4
Posts: 6,231
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimJoplin View Post
Couple of things: 1) 2 of the 4 people killed were high school friends of my wife. 2) Texas has a ton of these kind of crossings, but they are usually found where ancillary roads enter a major highway and have to cross a RR track (eg: coming out of oil fields or ranch country). I do not recall ever seeing a crossing on a regular road/street with enough rise to be of concern. I have had problems with dragging the rear of a 24' travel trailer going up inclines into parking lots, entrances to places, etc.
Hi: JimJoplin... So sorry to read this post. Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
__________________
Quote Bugs Bunny..."Don't take life too seriously, none of us get out of it ALIVE"!!!
'16 Ram Eco D. 4X4 Laramie Longhorn CC & '14 Escape 5.0TA
St.Thomas (Not the Virgin Islands) Ontario
escape artist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 04:20 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
dfandrews's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Ventura County, California
Trailer: 2015 Escape 17A -- "The Pullman"
Posts: 1,848
Note: Thread tangent ahead!:
There are any number of places to high-center. In January, after a nice drive along Historic Route 66, we stopped at the Railroad station/museum in Kingman, AZ. With the trailer, we had to park next door in a gravel area. When we pulled out, it was uphill to the sidewalk/driveway ramp, then on to the highway with a lower cutter and high crown in the center. "Scraaaape!".
I thought it was the tongue jack foot, but the right front BAL stabilizer foot had scraped, and caught on the lip between the sidewalk and the gravel, thus bending the BAL.
When we got home, I took the stabilizer off to straighten it, but the jack screw ("drive rod") was bent.
Solution: Called Norco Industries (mfr. of BAL products), they told me to call Colaw RV, their parts distributor, in the S.E. US. A week later, I had the replacement drive rod. Took 10 minutes to install. It took talking to 5 people on the phone, but all were nice, helpful, and knowlegeable.
Now I know to look more carefully at driveway and roadway transitions.
__________________
Don & Teresa
2015 17A: 2011 Honda Pilot
In Orbe Terrum Non Visi / RLTW
dfandrews is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 06:02 PM   #18
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: central, Florida
Trailer: 2003 Lance 845
Posts: 23
Drive a tractor trailer for a living, we have a couple of tracks like that around here. Not a problem unless you're a "lowboy " trailer, they're only about 5 or 6 inches off the ground and traffic will grind to a halt when they get stuck. It is fun to wait around for the giant tow truck to show up and guess how much it's going to cost some poor driver
turtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 07:56 PM   #19
Junior Member
 
Radar1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Sharpsburg, Georgia
Trailer: 2005 Scamp 16 SD
Posts: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
The issue with the railroad crossings is "A" deciding factor not
"THE" deciding factor. It is more a ,been there , done that , no reason to do it / see it again thing. We really liked Georgia.
Even GA has their fair share of vehicles getting stuck on rail crossings. People don't see the big warning signs until after the fact :-(
Radar1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2017, 09:27 PM   #20
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Pineville, Louisiana
Trailer: 2015 Casita 17FD & 2 handmade teardrops
Posts: 7
/
Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Simple answer " Avoid Texas" , which is what we plan on doing until they get this crisis resolved

(there is no "crisis" and because of that, it will never be resolved)

. No sense in taking unnecessary chances when you can avoid the problem entirely. There are still 49 other states to visit , so why worry.
...these type crossing are EVERYWHERE(including Wi)...there are quite a few of them in my little area and as a near 3million mile, accident free commercial(18wheeler) driver, I have seen(and avoided) these crossings in darn near every state in the nation...sheeesh, try eastern NJ or maybe Chicago if you wanna see difficult rail crossings......
madjack
p.s. I can think of a few reasons to avoid Tx, but, that is not one of them...................mj
__________________

madjack is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off






» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:55 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×