American politicians and businessmen give lip service to "infrastructure" improvement, but always defer the funding to their successors. That's why things like this happen.
A timber rail bridge burned and collapsed early Wednesday in Koochiching County, tipping two rail cars onto the banks of the Rat Root River and temporarily blocking a Canadian National rail artery that connects the Pacific Coast with Chicago... The route has made Ranier, Minn., just east of International Falls, one of the busiest rail crossings on the U.S.-Canada border.As Chevy Chase used to say when he anchored the news on Saturday Night Live, "let me repeat that for the hard of hearing" - WE ARE TRANSPORTING DANGEROUS MATERIALS OVER HUNDRED-YEAR-OLD WOODEN BRIDGES.
The bridge across the Rainy River from Fort Frances, Ontario, to Ranier was built in 1907 and had long been a quiet crossing. But now it carries more than 20 trains a day that are up to two miles long, said Dennis Wagner, mayor of Ranier...
“What happens when this other bridge that’s 120 years old collapses? Oh! Imagine that. And then it fills the whole Rainy River full of oil and gas,” he said. “Rail safety and bridge safety has been an issue of major concern around here.”
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