Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Nigel Christopher Letter to the Editor on railroad bridge

This letter was published in the Wed edition of the local daily paper after it was initially sent to Judge Brian Lee. Several good points made by Nigel.
Barbara Bruechner
My views on this subject are as follows:
1.    Our 'friends' at Pate are clearly trying to protect their own interests, not those of Titus County.
2.    From their presentation this AM, the issue is a combination of the railroad raising their track grade and some sort of design issue. The lady from Pate mentioned it but neither she nor her boss gave any details. It likely has something to do with the bolt holes on the steel beams not lining up and that one end of the bridge having to be raised 3 feet, not 15 inches.
3.    Getting on and completing the project, so that the state accepts it and starts to reimburse Titus County is the priority.
4.    The contract with Pate clearly makes them responsible for all aspects of the project including surveying, design, construction and interfacing with all involved parties. Therefore to recover the extra costs $1.8 million the County only needs to sue Pate. Leave it up to them as to how they recover the money from the other parties or out of their own insurance or pockets. They are required to have $5 million of professional liability insurance per the contract.
5.    If you want to get to the bottom of the design issue and the railroad's responsibilities I suggest that the Commissioners vote to hire an independent engineer and get their opinion. A retired TXDOT engineer would be a good direction to go in.
Nigel Christopher

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