Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

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  #1  
Old 11-11-2007, 01:08 PM
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Default Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Many of you know that I have a big issue with the fact that when we purchased our lot and had our house built in Chatham, we were not told that a freight train runs day and night about 500 yards behind our house. The engineers blow the horn continuously as they pass by.

I received a call Thursday from an old roommate of mine who is now executive producer of one ot the nations top rated television network news magazine programs. It is seen each week on a major television network. They are doing a story on the new "Train Horn Rule" established by the Railroad Safety Administration. It seems that people don't believe there has been any change in the train horns since the new rule took effect last year.

Anyway, I sent my friend a link to TOTV several months ago and he viewed my piece on the train that runs behind my house. He wants to send a NY based crew here in December or January to do a story with me on how the train and horn has impacted the lives of my wife and I. The train traffic is scheduled to increase by 33% over the next few years because Florida is closing the East coast freight line and redirecting it all to Wildwood. Their story is apparently going to include several places around the country where train noise is a problem.

They will get some really good stuff, since in December and January there is a dramatic increase in Florida train traffic (20 to 30 or more times a day). He explained (and I already knew) that even though they shoot the piece, there is no guarantee that it will run. They often shoot twice as many stories as they can air. But he said this has all the elements of being one they select because it has lots of sound and visuals as well as emotion.

Funny thing. Here it is 7:30 Sunday morning and while I am writing this post, the train has gone by twice, sounding the horn all the way. This should make a really good story for them.

For those who are not yet residents of the Villages, I want to add that the train is most noticeable in some areas of Chatham. The farther you get away from this spot, the less you can hear it. In most places, it is only heard in the distance and is not a problem. We have even become mostly use to it, my only complication is that we were not told in the beginning.. We would have purchased elsewhere in the Village had we been told. It is my position that the real estate agent was under an obligation to say something like, "A freight train passes by here 24 times a day and it is loud, is that going to be a problem." (Ya right)
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Old 11-11-2007, 02:03 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Jan,
does the train pass near Legacy Lane?? I sent you a PM but guess you haven't had time to answer it..
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Old 11-11-2007, 02:40 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Yes Donna, I did answer your PM and even included a map with a diagram of the address you asked about and our house as well.
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Old 11-11-2007, 02:52 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

I'm one of the lucky ones where the train is far enough away to be an almost romantic sound -- at least it was until I saw your vid. I am now very conscious of it and think how sad it is to have your dream disrupted by this constantly.

I hope your home is one of those that gets aired and that it somehow wakes up TV to what they have done and that maybe they will come up with something to help at least a little (like a good sound wall around Chatham).

I know it means little in the scheme of things, but you have my deepest sympathy.
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Old 11-11-2007, 04:10 PM
Hyacinth Bucket Hyacinth Bucket is offline
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Hi,

What wonderful news. with what has been written already

"I hope your home is one of those that gets aired and that it somehow wakes up TV to what they have done and that maybe they will come up with something to help at least a little (like a good sound wall around Chatham)."

I know people get used to the sound of trains that are close by and without thinking about it, there voices go higher and lower depending on the noise level of the train.

I had thought there were disclosure laws when you buy a house.

Hope this does the trick.

Perhaps if TV family knew this segment, had an excellent chance to be aired on national television, they would get their act together and do something prior to the filming.

HB



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Old 11-11-2007, 04:38 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

When I was at Ft Dix, NJ in Army AIT our barracks was right across the street from McGuire AFB. McGuire was testing jet engines usually starting at about 1 AM. The first few weeks I was there the horrendous jet blast blew most of us out of our bunks, however, within a couple weeks we were used to it and it didn't wake us anymore.

Give it some more time and it may not bother you.
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Old 11-11-2007, 04:40 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

We feel so bad about this. My wife (who has MS) and I absolutely love our house and the Villages. We moved here to get her away from stress. To a place where she could enjoy peace and quite. If only the agent has told us about the freight train noise, we could have looked elsewhere in the Villages. At the time we purchased the lot and ordered the house, there were no neighbors to check with, the whole area was being developed. Like most of you, we were under very strict time limits to make a decsion and place a deposit. After our preview week, we were back in New York, like a couple of little kids....so excited about our new home and surroundings. I wish you could have been here the first night we lived in the house when the freight train came blasting through. It was like somebody took a sledge hammer and smashed our dream. My wife and I both cried.

If we try to sell the house now, we are under obligation to tell prospective buyers about the noise. I guess you all know what that means.
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Old 11-11-2007, 04:44 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckinca
When I was at Ft Dix, NJ in Army AIT our barracks was right across the street from McGuire AFB. McGuire was testing jet engines usually starting at about 1 AM. The first few weeks I was there the horrendous jet blast blew most of us out of our bunks, however, within a couple weeks we were used to it and it didn't wake us anymore.

Give it some more time and it may not bother you.
As I said in my earlier post, it's been 4 years and it's not the noise as much as it is that we were not told up front. This is not like the military where we have no choice. We paid $50,000 extra for this lot because it was "premium."

We had an appraiser/agent from the Villages come and appraise our house last year. She told us that we absolutely had to disclose the train and that our value is dimished becasue of its existance. We're here for the duration, I'm afraid.
  #9  
Old 11-11-2007, 05:18 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Maybe, Jan there would be buyers for your house who like being very close to the train tracks? There are people who seem to love trains. They seem more common than those who would like moving in where airplanes are making a lot of noise.

That might even be a selling point?
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Old 11-11-2007, 07:07 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Chuck, When I was in AIT at Ft. Dix, the air boys took off every 5 minutes around the clock. You're right, after awhile, you just didn't hear it anymore. We were young and so tired at the end of a day we just crashed and didn't hear a thing. I used to go over by McGuire occasionally and watch the takeoffs and landings thinking I'd give my right arm to go up in one of the fighters. Today, I don't think I could become used to it at my age and I sympathize with you Jan. Please let us know if they decide to air your segment.
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Old 11-11-2007, 07:13 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Jan,
Is your house close to a RR crossing? The law says they must blow horn so many feet from a crossing.
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Old 11-11-2007, 08:00 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Hey Jan..

I never got the message, sorry..I just checked again, still no message..

I was just curious how close the train was to the location I mentioned...

Thanks any way!!
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Old 11-11-2007, 10:34 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

I have had a number of people ask me what I want the Villages to do about this situation. I have sent them (The Developer) two letters about a solution, but got no reply.

There is such a thing as a "quiet zone." That is where trains do not have to sound their horn during the night hours. In order to have a "quiet zone" established, there must be an initiative on the part of a governmental or administrative entity. There is an application that must be filed with the state and federal governments. The Villages has an enormous amount of clout locally, statewide and nationally. I have pleaded with them to spearhead the initiative to have the stretch of track along the villages (and behind my house) declared a "quiet zone." Neither of my two letters received an answer.

They have a full time legal department that could do in one day what it would take an army of residents to accomplish in a year. It's the night hours especially that are a problem. We can't ever again sleep with our windows open. A quite zone would give us partial escape from the ongoing barrage of 175 decibel train horns day and night, night and day.

By the Way, I am never, ever going to give up on this battle. I do not quit. I will use every option at my disposal to resolve this issue that plagues my wife and me. In the meantime, we will enjoy every hour here at the villages, between freight trains.
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Old 11-11-2007, 11:31 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham

Jan, good luck with your battle. You have lots of friends on TOTV who sympathize with the plight of you and your wife. I know you will put the word out if we can assist you in any way.
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Old 11-11-2007, 11:44 PM
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Default Re: Update on the train in my back yard in Chatham



Barefoot is right, if there is any way we can help, please don't hesitate to ask...
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