Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Colorado Weather - Beware

 Springtime in the Rockies

My maternal grandfather would always say, “I don’t care if you go naked, bring all the clothes you got”. Toponas, CO circa 1956 an April blizzard shut down both the highway and railroad for four days.

For today, Banner is enjoying his sunbath on the balcony.

A Colorado government program that actually works as intended?

Works more or less as intended. It hasn’t been hijacked (yet) by (P)regressives.


Volunteer funding by people who are bad at math is a great idea, IMO, and I am one of the volunteers.

Faster than a speeding train

Banner hearing the refrigerator door open


My sister in an independent insurance adjuster who is often called to investigate truck wrecks in Wyoming and Nebraska. Most are on I-80 and she must contend with traffic speeding by. She is exploring using drones but is hampered by Wyoming winds. More experience will lead to better results. I’m all in favor of anything that lowers her risks.

My criminality thwarted

Recently I parked across the street from the barber shop and jaywalked. Haircut complete, walked up to the curb with car keys in hand and waited for traffic to clear. A Greeley police car pulled up behind my car and sat there until I walked up to the corner and pressed the crosswalk button before moving on. Oh well, exercise is good.

Francis Scott Key Bridge failure

Disclaimer. I’ve no knowledge or experience in ship handling. What surprised me was the damage to one structural support could bring down so much of the bridge. Was that because of faulty engineering? From available pictures it appears the structural steel portion collapsed.

 Some sixty years ago the Army spent several weeks teaching a few of us the rudiments of destroying structures. We were taught bridges have built in shear points. Failure of one portion would be isolated from the rest of the bridge. We were taught to look for these shear points and exploit them.  An example used in our instruction was the Ludendorff Bridge at Remagen.

Just to be clear, only enough of the bridge remained intact enough to get troops across to secure a defensible bridge head. Soon a float bridge was across that could support heavy vehicle.

Californication guide


Colorado is unique in having passed a Constitution amendment called the Taxpayers Bill of Rights. Two important points are all tax increases must be subject to a vote by the taxpayers and excess taxes collected be returned to the taxpayer. ($800 this year).

IMO, this is the only thing preventing total Californication by (P)regressives. Recently a water district got a TABOR smack down. 


By national standards home taxes in Colorado are among the lowest in the country. Without TABOR Portland, OR will happen. Portland? Median home value is taxed at $14,000+ annually.

Spendthrift politicians are always seeking ways to get around TABOR. Fees are popular.  For those interested, here is a long and somewhat arcane explanation.


 As always, YMMV


Wild, wild west said...

That's some mighty fine police work there, Barney Fife would have been proud.

The massive structural failure of the bridge not terribly surprising. All that stuff is interconnected. One piece goes, it all goes down. It isn't economically efficient to do anything else, even when you're spending somebody else's money. Google up "I-40 bridge collapse Oklahoma" or something similar and you'll see what happened when a tugboat captain had a heart attack and passed out, and one of his barges took out the bridge over the Arkansas River. Different structural design, but similar cascading failure.

Fairly recently, 2021, a severely cracked beam was discovered on the I-40 river bridge at Memphis that had been missed during previous inspection. DOT had even gotten a heads up from some guy on a boy scout outing who spotted the problem in 2016, but had ignored the warning. Otherwise, you'd have heard about that one going down, too, only without a boat being involved for that one.

Old NFO said...

Five second rule doesn't apply when you have a two second dog... Re the bridge, 100,000 ton ships generate something over three million pounds of force. And yes, any of those supports was a shear point.

Well Seasoned Fool said...

I wasn't clear on the shear points. These are places designed to fail under certain circumstances. Much like a shear pin on an old Johnson outboard motor propeller.

1978 the drawbridge over the Duwamish river in Seattle was wiped out by a freighter, isolating West Seattle. At the time I was political friends with a man who admitted to being the mayor's bag man. One night in his cups he said, in effect, "Now we actually have to build a West Seattle bridge, it is hardly worthwhile being involved in politics".

Our town has our share of Barney Fife's. We also have, me included, our share of scofflaws.

drjim said...

I'd think she'd need a pretty robust drone to handle the weather in Wyoming!

Ah, yes....."Banner The Observant" on duty 24/7!

What I've read about the bridge collapse said the bridge was doomed. They didn't put in any protection for the piers, like a bumper or something to deflect the ship, and as soon as the first pier failed, it came down. It'll be a "Billion Dollar Bridge" by the time it gets rebuilt.

Long Live TABOR!

Wild, wild west said...

Start pulling up images of bridges across the Mississippi River (a.k.a. "the crick" in some circles) and compare their design and supports to those of the Baltimore bridge and some of you may be interested to see how little protection most of them actually have.

The I-10 bridge at Baton Rouge is a good place to start. It's a pretty good hike upriver from the Gulf, but they get ocean going vessels that far up the crick all the time.

Well Seasoned Fool said...

RE drones. She is still researching. Some can operate in 25 mph winds.

Saw a YouTube clip featuring some Deleware River authority. Up from that failed bridge other bridges have huge concrete "dolphins" protecting them.

I will take your word for it. The only bridges I've really noticed are the two downstream from Cairo, Il over the Illinois and Mississippi rivers. I've crossed them several times. Old, but impressive. As an aside, I will go out of my way to avoid driving in Illinois. Horrible roads and a revenue trooper every ten miles.

I have family in Spartanburg vicinity and for a few years was a test driver for Roush. Many trips to West Point, GA (Kia plant), Montgomery, AL (Hyundai plant) and Roush's Naples, FL operation.

The old combined rail and road bridge at Vicksburg is also impressive. The Interstate bridge at the same location is just a bridge.

I've probably driven over the bridge at Baton Rouge at least once but can't remember when. Probably a Roush trip in a pre-production Hyundai. I had one four day trip with some type of GPS system they wanted tested. Involved driving a pre-determined route through Texas with stops every hour. At each stop I would cycle the system ten times. Pain in the ass trip but, of course, I was getting paid.

The Debinair Dude said...

Why would I waste my time reading ANYTHING at that Slime-bag blog aka Progressive Bull-Shit???? The People there are both Liars, and crazy, and the author is as Nutty as a Fruit Cake, and has an Asinine Obsession with har Hatred for Donald Trump. Why else would anyone have a blog totally to ridicule Mr. Trump, yet not say ONE WORD about the Moronic Potatoehead Joe Biden or his Crackhead son.
If you what to see some real news without the bullshit watch Fox News!

Well Seasoned Fool said...

Check your meds.

jeff d said...

I have always been curious of drones in the wind. Living in Colorado, visited Wyoming a lot. Did some quick Googling when read your post. Did not find anything consequential for you. Some drones rated upto 30 mph winds. OK at ground level, goodbye at 100 feet. Some of the most promising designs are military; their prices are epic. Posting now because Google has decided I am in the market for a six figure drone and is telling me about companies that sell them every chance it gets. If I notice anything good, will let you know.

Well Seasoned Fool said...

jeff d
Thanks for the effort.One of my sister's associates has one that works for his needs and she will probably get one. As an insurance adjuster they need photos of accident scenes. Another need is looking at roofs.

Google and Facebook. Look at one advertisement and a dozen more will follow. Why their algorithms decided I'm interested in firms that will pay me cash for my property is a mystery. Probably because I look up property addresses as part of my mortgage work.