Author Topic: Trapped in a railyard.  (Read 467 times)

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Bob Bufkin

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Trapped in a railyard.
« on: March 26, 2014, 11:53:31 AM »
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pwnj

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Re: Trapped in a railyard.
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2014, 05:10:56 PM »
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Something like that happened to me once at the B&O museum in Baltimore.  We were parked in the middle row between the static display trains and getting everyone in car seats (I have 4 kids, plus my MIL was with us) took some time.  Nevertheless, it was still before the posted closing time so we drove around the train and we were surprised to find the main iron gate closed and latched.  No problem, I thought, I'll just call the security company number on the sign attached to the gate.  *BZZZZZZZZZZZZT* Sorry, they haven't serviced the museum for a while and can't help us.  OK, so I'll call the main museum number, someone must still be here, it's only just now closing time, right? *BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZT* Strike two. No answer, no emergency contact info, nothin'. So I tried their website on my phone, in search of any other contact information. *BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZT* Nada. So, next up, called Baltimore Police. Out comes two police cars with three officers. Can they do anything? *BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZT* Nope. The museum had the wrong emergency contact number filed at the police station. So, they said they might be able to get a locksmith to come out to open the gate.

At this point, I'm getting dreamy ideas of exercising squatter's rights and moving in permanently, but that idea was nixed by the wife.  So, since I'm an electronics/IT/telecom guy, I notice that their gate motor case has an emergency override crank on the side.  I asked the officers if I could have permission to try and open the gate myself, to which they said something to the affect of "doesn't bother us, go for it."  I open the side door to find that the crank handle for the override is missing. *BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZT* So, I headed back to my van, got my tools out, took the cover off, traced the wires, shorted the trigger, and opened the gate. *DING DING DING* The officers asked me to show them how to do that, if they needed to do it again, so I showed them, then moved the van outside the gate, walked back in, triggered the gate, dropped the hood back on, and ran out before the gate closed, leaving it locked up tight.

I emailed the museum's curator and let him know what happened, pointing out what needed to be fixed to prevent it happening again, and he apologized profusely, promised to make the changes, and said he'd be holding a meeting with all staff to make sure they didn't fail to check the grounds properly prior to closing in the future.

Still though, that boxcab was this close to being mine...  :trollface: