Can you ride near RR tracks and power lines?
Posted 15 March 2012 - 12:20 PM
I’m New to the off road scene and wanted to know if you can "legally" ride off-road next to rail road tracks, and on power line roads? All the roads i ride on are open (no gates or signs) and there is not any "no trespassing" signs up, so i guess its ok. I just wanted to be sure!
Posted 15 March 2012 - 01:19 PM
That being said, quite a few of us ride those places all the time. Most train engineers wave if you wave at them. I only recently had an issue with a cop who saw me on some tracks and gave chase, but I managed to get my passenger and I home unscathed.
Be smart- ride easy, have a quiet pipe, don't litter/spray paint and if people are around when you go to ride these areas, just turn around and come back another day. If you see people walking on the trail, either slow way down and go as far as you can around them, or pull over and let them pass.
Posted 15 March 2012 - 05:49 PM
Posted 15 March 2012 - 08:12 PM
Posted 15 March 2012 - 08:59 PM
Posted 16 March 2012 - 04:14 AM
You could, but I certianly wouldn't recommmend it.
Your best bet is to avoid contact with law enforcement altogether.
When I ride along side the tracks here in Cleveland I do it with my lights off and ready to turn and run at the second I see a vehicle - especially the Ford SUVs the RR cops use around here. Avoid the busy main lines. I also avoid being seen by train crews. I don't know about all the RRs but since 9/11 CSX crews have been instructed to immediately report anyone they see on RR property.
And it helps to bring along a radio scanner tuned to the RR frequencies. Then you'll know if you've been reported.
Edited by Goggles Pisano, 16 March 2012 - 04:17 AM.
Posted 16 March 2012 - 05:18 AM
The active tracks I ride along side I’m about 15-20 feet from at all times while near, and there NJ transit tracks near Mt. Arlington but ill keep that to a minimum from now on, which sucks because these trials are pretty cool terrain.
Posted 16 March 2012 - 07:17 AM
In some places the state or local governments will buy the right-of-way for future use. But then you usually and up with a paved bicycle trail where motors are striclty verboten unless it's on a wheelchair. At that point you're pretty much SOL. And sometimes they'll fence it all off so nobody can use it...
Once in a while I'll ride along a transit line, but when I get there I'll stop and wait for the next train to go by in my direction then follow it just out of sight. Keep a public timetable with you so you know when to expect a train and where they make their station stops.
Posted 16 March 2012 - 07:58 AM
Gov't, utility, and RR 'private property' signs mean "DON'T GET CAUGHT!"
I have always exercised feroucious caution crossing live RR tracks where there is no crossing (and where there is!).
I have seen morons cross where not safe to do so, and have heard their 'close call' tales.
Posted 18 March 2012 - 10:26 AM
When running trains, I've had some near-misses of trespassers, tractors, ATV's, etc. EVERY TIME I'm herding a train down the rails and I see someone close to the rails, my butt puckers up and I pray they have an ounce of common sense and won't do something stupid. I have been involved in crossing accidents (autos/trucks) and thus far, no fatalities. A trespassing incident is almost ALWAYS fatal... and messy. PLEASE rethink this idea of riding/hiking/whatever along the railroad right of ways.
Posted 18 March 2012 - 10:38 AM
Sad story, saw a guy shuffleing along the tracks while I was returning from an afternoon ride. a few hours later, he was killed by a train. If I were to guess he committed suicide by train, but evidently I happen to be the last person to see him alive.
So be careful when crossing tracks, but I ride the easement all the time.
Posted 18 March 2012 - 04:19 PM
I took a train rescue course for the FD and the engineer we talked to said pretty much everyone runs over at least one person in their career.
After reading this, I'm going to consider myself lucky and stick to abandoned tracks.
Posted 19 March 2012 - 05:42 AM
But it beat the hell out of the alternative. I learned a lesson that day. One that dragging my bike out of the swamp made permanent. Now having done CSX, AMTRAK and Metro contractor rail safety training every year for the last eight years it has really been driven home. I want no part of tangling with trains.
The videos they show at the end of thore training sessions makes it pretty clear what happens if you screw up.
Posted 19 March 2012 - 08:10 AM
The key word here is "along." It should go without saying that riding/hiking/whatever between the rails is suicide on a busy line and generally not a good idea on any active line.
But around here most of the RR lines were built for 4 to 8 tracks and now only have one or two left. Like I said before I try to hide when I see a train coming, but it's quite easy to follow the vacated roadbeds next to the active rails without going near a moving train (there's usually a dirt road there anyway). As long as you allow common sense to prevail you'll be fine.
Posted 31 March 2012 - 08:33 PM
Shot you a PM. I grew up in morris county and am familiar where you are riding.