Don’t ignore DeKalb’s foundation in trains

In Tuesday’s column “Wayside Horns Are Needed Now,” a couple of huge points were ignored completely.

Firstly, the only reason DeKalb exists is because of the Union Pacific Railroad. Like many towns along the railroad, like Rochelle and Geneva, it sprouted up to serve farmers to get their crops and livestock shipped by rail to other places across the country. There are also a lot of jobs created in DeKalb, because business bought up former Union Pacific shops all along Pleasant Street.

Putting a railroad at fault for the noise it creates is not only wrong and ignorant but it’s a disgrace to the railroad and the role it played in developing this community.

Secondly, the noise produced by modern locomotives is a fraction of the noise generated by steam locomotives that were very prevalent into the ’60s. In fact, the Union Pacific Railroad is one of the few railroads that allows steam locomotives on its tracks and is the only railroad that still runs its own steam locomotives.

If one of the two steam locomotives come through town, I’d like to see a difference in decibel readings between a train going through downtown DeKalb on a normal day and a steam locomotive pulling a train through. You will appreciate the modernness of today’s diesel-electric locomotives.

When people complain about noise levels near the tracks, there is one thing that should come to mind. Those people chose to live in those houses. The train tracks predate the houses and apartments that line the tracks, some by a century or more. These people knew the tracks were by their houses and should have known what to expect.

To further hurt the state’s budget because of people’s ignorance when choosing housing for themselves and their families is a waste of money. They have the freedom to move instead of forcing the taxpayers of this state to grant them a convenience.

Adam Snider

Junior, business administration major