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Railway progress into Darwin



 
 
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  #11  
Old September 20th, 2003, 06:37 AM
PhilD
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Default Railway progress into Darwin


"Keith Sayers" wrote in message
...
On Thu, 18 Sep 2003 08:26:21 GMT, "PhilD" wrote:

How long ago were you here????


Well the first time was pre-cyclone .....

A small story, FWIW. I had been living in the Pilbara - on the
cyclone coast - and had been familiar both with cyclones and the sort
mid to late last century construction designed to withstand them. In
due course I left there for a leisurely trip around Oz. Coped with
the 400 miles of dirt road to the fascinating little port of Broome.
Bumped my way around the Kimberleys, getting about as far down the
Gibb River road as was possible with two-wheel drive and spare fuel in
jerry cans. On across the VRD to Katherine and that enormous gorge -
'Wow, what a small river in such a big gorge - why build this bridge
so high?' ..... Drove on north up the the 'Track'. Bitumen! Wow,
what luxury! Only one lane, need to pull off onto the dirt to pass,
but still the luxury of smooth driving. Eventually, a day or two
later maybe, reached a country crossroads called Berrimah. Remember
the little village there with its post office and a fellow who mounted
Buff horns. Soon after that was driving alongside what used to be
claimed as the world's largest airport in area covered (or was it just
Australia's largest?). And so into Darwin.

There's still a stretch of the old Stuart Hwy south from Adelaide River (now
called a "scenic route"), and it's frightening to think that we used to use
it all the time, and with roadtrains always present. Deliberately putting 2
wheels in the dirt to overtake a roadtrain was normal driving and you either
learnt the art, had accidents or did a lot of following.

I was looking for a friend in Alawa (who, incidentally, was a
trackie on the NAR) and that took me a while. As I was driving around
I was absorbing the feel of the place and I still remember my first
impression : 'Mmmmm, interesting. This area is evidently not cyclone
prone. These houses are obviously not built to cyclone standards.'

The following Christmas came Tracy ......

I was posted here in mid '73, but was working in Katherine at the time of
Tracy and came into Darwin on Boxing Day to find relatives. There were whole
new suburbs destroyed, but amongst older suburbs were wooden framed, fibro
clad houses barely touched and other near new brick ones destroyed. With
many destroyed ones it was quite easy to see that the roof was poorly tied
down and just lifted off and then the walls fell in.

We pay a lot more now for cyclone coding, but it's still only to cat 4
standard. One day we will get a 5, but hopefully not before I've built my
own shelter to cope with it. We've always wondered why some of the same
rules are not applied down south as well. We see media coverage of small
storms down there and can see how simple things like proper attachment of
roofs would save a lot of damage.

__________________________________________________ ____________
Keith Sayers, Canberra, Australia
Mail : 6 Clambe Place,
CHARNWOOD, ACT 2615
http://www.pcug.org.au/~kmsayers
--------------------------------------------------------------



  #12  
Old September 22nd, 2003, 12:34 AM
Keith Sayers
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Default Railway progress into Darwin

On Sat, 20 Sep 2003 05:37:41 GMT, "PhilD" wrote:

We've always wondered why some of the same rules are not applied down south as well.


Probably some result of risk assessment. One in ten, hundred,
thousand year chance of something happening. At what point do you say
'take the risk'? Apparently something of the sort happened here in
Canberra some thirty years ago. There was a proposal to build a new
suburb to be called Duffy on what was then the edge of the city and
against a pine forest. The risk of fire coming down through the
forest was, apparently, foreseen but considered such a low risk that
it was accepted.

Last January ........
__________________________________________________ ____________
Keith Sayers, Canberra, Australia
Mail : 6 Clambe Place,
CHARNWOOD, ACT 2615
http://www.pcug.org.au/~kmsayers
--------------------------------------------------------------
  #13  
Old September 22nd, 2003, 09:41 AM
PhilD
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Default Railway progress into Darwin


"Keith Sayers" wrote in message
...
On Sat, 20 Sep 2003 05:37:41 GMT, "PhilD" wrote:

We've always wondered why some of the same rules are not applied down

south as well.

Probably some result of risk assessment. One in ten, hundred,
thousand year chance of something happening. At what point do you say
'take the risk'? Apparently something of the sort happened here in
Canberra some thirty years ago. There was a proposal to build a new
suburb to be called Duffy on what was then the edge of the city and
against a pine forest. The risk of fire coming down through the
forest was, apparently, foreseen but considered such a low risk that
it was accepted.

Last January ........



It would be funny if it wasn't so serious.

I think that the reason that higher construction standards etc aren't
applied elsewhere has a simple answer in votes. Up here the application of
the cyclone coding had little impact federally on votes, but if applied in
southern capitals I doubt that voters would like the price consequences.
Insurance companies probably wouldn't mind though.

Just heard on our TV news that there's 2km of line to be laid tomorrow to
the end of the line. There's apparently still 6km of line to be done in the
freight yards etc though.

PhilD


  #14  
Old September 25th, 2003, 02:22 AM
[email protected]
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Default Railway progress into Darwin

"PhilD" wrote in message ...
Went down to see track laying cross Elizabeth River bridge, just on edge of
Palmerston, this afternoon. Interesting to watch, but didn't get to see
ballast laying, so must go and have another look tomorrow.

Looks likely to finish track laying itself within a fortnight, many months
ahead of schedule.

From the lengths of rail being laid, already welded together, it should be a
much quieter trip than I remember from the old Ghan.

Phil


Saw on the Today show the final connection of the track, Clair Martin
and Dr. Stack doing the honors. Did the former chief minisiter (what's
his name) get involved at all? or did Clair Martin take all the
credit
Looking forward to training it from ASP to DRW sometime in the future
Ed
  #15  
Old September 25th, 2003, 09:24 AM
PhilD
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Posts: n/a
Default Railway progress into Darwin


wrote in message
om...
"PhilD" wrote in message

...
Went down to see track laying cross Elizabeth River bridge, just on edge

of
Palmerston, this afternoon. Interesting to watch, but didn't get to see
ballast laying, so must go and have another look tomorrow.

Looks likely to finish track laying itself within a fortnight, many

months
ahead of schedule.

From the lengths of rail being laid, already welded together, it should

be a
much quieter trip than I remember from the old Ghan.

Phil


Saw on the Today show the final connection of the track, Clair Martin
and Dr. Stack doing the honors. Did the former chief minisiter (what's
his name) get involved at all? or did Clair Martin take all the
credit
Looking forward to training it from ASP to DRW sometime in the future
Ed

I think you mean Denis Burke, but no I don't think he was involved, or the
media didn't show it.

Clare acts like it was all her own personal work, unfortunately. I doubt
that it would ever have been built if Labour had been in government during
the same period. Too busy holidaying at taxpayers expense in Greece to do
anything useful.

Better go now before I start on more comments on that subject, blood
pressure already rising.

PhilD


  #16  
Old September 27th, 2003, 06:20 AM
Odysseus
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Default Railway progress into Darwin


The justification of infrastructure building such as these shouldn't just be
measured by the short term cash returns, rather we should be looking into
the future. 100 years to get around to building 1500 km of railway line and
how many years and still no alternate Sydney airport is rather pathetic.
We're run by committee's that eternally debate anything without really ever
getting anywhere. Our leaders have no vision of the future of this country.
Our politicians never have a problem finding money for pet projects that
don't really better the country, but a steady program for rail projects is
usually put off to a future generation. Meanwhile we have to rely on road
transport, so everything ends up designed around it, regardless of long term
consequences.


I'm a Yank.

Our politicians are the same way and always have been. The following is from
a song in the musical 1776. It's a fictionalized story about what transpired
leading up to the Continental Congress declaring independence from Great
Britain.


They may sit here for years and years in Philadelphia
These indecisive grenadiers of Philadelphia
They can't decide on what is right or wrong
or what is good or bad
I'm convinced the only purpose
this congress ever had
was to gather here specifically
to drive John Adams mad!


Chorus:
You see we piddle twiddle and resolve
not one damn thing do we solve
piddle twiddle and resolve
nothing's ever solved
in foul, fetid, fuming, foggy, filthy, Philadelphia.

  #17  
Old September 29th, 2003, 01:18 AM
Keith Sayers
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Default Railway progress into Darwin

On Sat, 27 Sep 2003 05:20:56 GMT, Odysseus wrote:

I'm a Yank.
Our politicians are the same way and always have been.


Hmmmm. And is it true what I heard about the people who choose
your politicians - that something like half are below average
intelligence?

__________________________________________________ ____________
Keith Sayers, Canberra, Australia
Mail : 6 Clambe Place,
CHARNWOOD, ACT 2615
http://www.pcug.org.au/~kmsayers
--------------------------------------------------------------
 




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