Rails--food transportation

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Gary North (www.garynorth.com) suggests supermarkets will go empty because rails (will fail) transport their supplies. How about trucks as food transporters--obvously bulk grains need trains, but other foods?

-- Joe Orchard (jorch89483@aol.com), January 13, 1998


The trucking industry already operates at capacity. They can hardly afford to do otherwise with margins so tight.

Sure, trucks can be re-asigned to carry nothing but food, but at the expense of just about every industry failing. almost everything moves by truck at one point or another already, except a few select bulk goods like coal etc, end even those will frequently hit the truck in route.

-- Art Welling (artw@lancnews.infi.net), January 14, 1998.

Don't forget that most trucks on the road these days are only a few years old and contain embedded chips that may or may not work in the year 2000. Also how are they going to get enough diesel fuel if the electric is disrupted in some areas, or the refineries have problems. The trucking companies dispatch systems may not work either. I wouldn't count on trucks being the answer to delivering food any more than the trains - that is if the food companies themselves don't have problems.

Remember Y2K is a VERY inter-related problem.

-- Rebecca Kutcher (kutcher@pionet.net), January 14, 1998.

A further comment about trucks: trucks need gas on a pretty regular basis. More intermittently, they need oil and repairs.

They also need willing drivers ... who may be worried about being hijacked or shot if they drive through dangerous neighborhoods.

The drivers also want to be paid when they arrive at the destination and unload their goods. No banking system = no payments = no deliveries.

-- Ed Yourdon (yourdon@sprintmail.com), January 15, 1998.

If just the payment system breaks down, but the physical ability to make the deliveries remains, keep in mind that the government does have the authority to take the food and the trucks and make those deliveries, payments or no payments.

-- Dennis Peterson (dennisp@bigfoot.com), January 23, 1998.

The rails & trucks & processing plants won't be working. You're welcome to join my Gardening List. I'm planning what I'll barter for food I can't grow, or butter from my Mennonite neighbors.

-- Candace (cturner@npwt.net), January 30, 1998.

Food, as seen today in stores, is several process steps removed from the grower. None of these steps are free of energy/computer requirements. Rail transportation is currently in an under capacity condition of handling food commodities as witnessed by the delays of weeks for grain producers to obtain the needed railcars for shipping grain that was stored in open piles on the ground due to lack of storage and shipping. How many are aware that the x-mas tree industry in OR was about to lose their 97 crop as railcars were not available until the govt stepped in an demanded that some were diverted?

-- Jim Paul (aware@todbbs.com), March 10, 1998.

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