As reported in the Sun Herald, a train collided with a bus in Biloxi on Tuesday, killing four people and injuring over 30 more. A terrible tragedy for sure.
Unfortunately, no one who has lived on the Coast is surprised. How many crossings are there between Back Bay and Bay St. Louis? Hundreds? They’ve been a hazard my whole life. When we were in junior high and would get our driver’s licenses soon, the railroad sent employees to talk at the school about the danger of trying to beat a train.
Not that me, my brother, or my sister needed the warning. Our mother grew up across the highway from the Southern Railroad. She often scared us with graphic stories about what happens when you don’t beat the train. It worked. I don’t trust crossing guards to be working properly.
But now maybe there is a solution for the Coast. President Trump wants to spend gazillions of dollars on infrastructure projects. Here’s an infrastructure project: move the Coast’s train tracks north of I-10. Then pave the current tracks and make it a recreation trail.
Mississippi’s political leaders should be able to get this done. Senator Cochran is chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee. And President Trump owes Governor Bryant for acting as a surrogate and hitting the campaign trail when most Republicans wouldn’t.
It would be a great use of federal money. It would help people and businesses on the Coast that lose productive time waiting on trains to pass. It would save lives. It would provide many jobs. It’s a no brainer. Unfortunately, it probably makes too much sense to actually happen.