(Fire added by ZPi to dramatize possible spontaneous combustion.)
Seattleites are again reminded why they voted "No" on dangerous monorails as tonight yet another accident occurred.
This time the Red and Blue monorail trains collided on a turn near Westlake, sending sparks flying and raining down shards of monorail glass on the streets below the track, narrowly missing slicing up innocent holiday shoppers who just want to live their lives in peace, unmolested by monorails. By sheer luck, only two of the 84 passengers sustained physical injuries requiring a trip to the hospital, although emotional scars will no doubt haunt them all for the rest of their lives -- as is the case with most monorail victims.
Passengers reported a loud, metal-on-metal screeching sound and people sliding out of their seats when the trains struck. In a notoriously unwise design decision, monorail trains -- although high-speed and elevated tens of feet off the ground -- are not equipped with seatbelts*. It was fortunate that no passengers flew out of their seats and through the ripped-off sliding door to their deaths on the sidewalk below.
Since the trains are elevated, evacuating all the passengers took over an hour and required fire ladders. If during that time the trains spontaneously combusted like one did last year, who knows how many passengers would have been cinderized in the blaze.
This is just the latest in a slew of recent accidents involving monorails around the world, including ones in Malaysia, California, and Las Vegas. So far no one has been killed, but it is just a matter of time.
* In contrast, ZPi Inteli-Tube pods are fully equipped with seatbelts and airbags. Plus, side collisions are not an issue since pods travel in enclosed tubes, with buffers of compressed air separating the pods before and after.