Search This Blog

Friday, October 4, 2013

Springfield Subway: A US&S House

 In the heyday of North American railroad signaling railroads and transit systems alike were in either the US&S Camp or the GRS Camp, although a brave few sometimes split their orders.  Well it turns out that the abandoned Springfield Subway system was in the former as evidenced by this screen capture from the 14th episode of the 21st season of The Simpsons entitled Postcards from the Wedge.  In this episode Bart commandeers a train in the disused Springfield Subway and Homer manages to save him by running into the subway control room and pulling a large and conveniently labeled "Kill Switch." Well, what else appears in the background but an animated US&S Model 14 interlocking machine!!

I'm serious, check it out.

Of all the nit picky technical things I would have picked for The Simpsons to get RIGHT in an episode this probably would have been near the bottom of my list. The mechanics of how this happens is not completely hard to guess at however, The subway system in New York, a well known source of comedic writing and animation talent, has a number of "fishbowl towers" on the IND division where old interlocking machines such as the Model 14 shown are visible to anyone standing around on the platform. The most access able of the Model 14 towers are in Queens, like this example at Union Turnpike, although I have been told one can see into Jay St in Brooklyn as well.

No comments:

Post a Comment