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Thread: Train explodes in Quebec

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    Train explodes in Quebec

    Several people were missing after four tank cars of petroleum products exploded in the middle of a small town in the Canadian province of Quebec early on Saturday in a fiery blast that destroyed dozens of buildings.

    http://news.yahoo.com/train-carrying...121417580.html



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    Scary!
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    Senior Member DiaDeLosMuertos's Avatar
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    Wow. This has more deaths than the plane crash yet this is the first I'm hearing of this. Bummer.
    Jenn

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    Five confirmed dead, more than 40 missing after Quebec explosions

    Five people have now been confirmed dead after an explosive train derailment touched off massive fires in the town of Lac-M?gantic, Que., on Saturday. Police say that number will grow and confirm they have more than 40 others on the official missing list.

    “We know there will be more deaths,” provincial police Lieutenant Michel Brunet told a news conference early Sunday.

    “I can tell you that we have met a lot of people....and what I can tell you is that about 40 people are considered missing,” he added.

    The Sur?t? du Qu?bec reported two additional casualties at each of two Sunday new conferences in the devastated town, where the fire continues to burn. One person had been confirmed dead on Saturday.

    Mr. Brunet wouldn't say where the first two bodies Sunday were found or if they were women or men, explaining they were burnt beyond recognition. The remains have been shipped for identification to the Quebec government’s crime lab in Montreal.

    “The families haven’t been advised, so we can’t say where they were found,” Mr. Brunet said.

    At the later news conference, about noon ET, Mr. Brunet confirmed that family members have reported more than 40 people missing. He cautioned that number could change, in either direction. On Saturday, police had refused to give a precise number, saying that many of those reported missing could be on vacation or elsewhere.

    Two train cars are still burning and considered dangerous, the town's fire chief, Denis Lauzon said early Sunday.

    “We have made some small gains overnight, but there are still risks of an explosion,” Mr. Lauzon said.

    Firefighters are staying 500 feet away from the burning train cars but are pouring a constant stream of lake water to fight the fires and to prevent further explosions.

    The continuing heat and the danger of further explosions means they can’t get anywhere near the Musi-Caf?, the popular bar where dozens of people were partying when the derailment occurred and who are feared dead.

    More than 2,000 people were forced to evacuate their homes, more than 550 people have registered with the Red Cross for assistance and meals and 163 people slept at the evacuation centre in a local high school, said Red Cross spokesperson Carl Boisvert.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/...ticle13052357/
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    http://edition.cnn.com/2013/07/08/wo...html?hpt=hp_t3
    At least 13 people were killed and an estimated 37 others are still missing in the small town in Quebec where a runaway train exploded in its downtown district on Saturday, Canadian police said at a news conference on Monday.
    Investigators last reported 40 missing and five dead on Sunday. Police are counting as missing people whom direct family members have reported, Quebec provincial police spokesman Benoit Richard said.

    "Hot zones" lingering more than two days after a train derailment in Quebec were hampering authorities' efforts Monday to continue their search for missing people.

    The 73-car train destroyed the downtown area of Lac-Megantic, Quebec, on Saturday. The crash and a series of explosions flattened 40 buildings and forced nearly 2,000 people to evacuate the town 130 miles east of Montreal.

    More than 1,500 of those evacuated will be allowed to return to their homes Tuesday, officials said earlier Monday. The specifics weren't available, but Mayor Colette Roy-Laroche said a plan will be in place by Tuesday morning to "reintegrate" two neighborhoods affected by the disaster.

    Among the buildings destroyed was the Musi-Cafe, which was hosting live music the night of the crash. Authorities have said they suspect some of the 40 missing residents were at the popular bar that night.

    "There's been a lot of work that's been done on the scene during the night and hopefully we'll get some more areas we can search during the day, but that, of course, is under the firefighters' responsibility," Richard said.

    On Sunday, provincial police Lt. Michel Brunet said at least five burned bodies had been found, but "we know that there will be many more" deaths.

    Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper described the town as a "war zone."

    "There is not a family in this area that is not touched by this," Harper told reporters after touring the destruction Sunday.

    Brunet said police are investigating whether foul play was involved.

    "Right now, we cannot say that it is a criminal act. We only can say we are looking at it as if it was," the police spokesman said.

    How did it happen?

    The company responsible for the train said an engine shutdown may have released air brakes holding the train in place.

    The train had stopped for a crew change Friday night in a station about 7 miles from Lac-Megantic, the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway said. The train's engineer had "tied down" and checked into a motel.

    "We don't know if the brakes were properly applied to the train, and we haven't been able to get into the fire area in order to inspect," Edward Burkhardt, president and CEO of Rail World Inc., the railway's parent company, told CTV.

    Investigators with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada found the locomotive event recorder, which they can analyze for information on throttle position and speed, among other data.

    The Quebec disaster came on the heels of a handful of other mishaps involving trains transporting oil in Canada, prompting some in the Canadian government to criticize what they say is a trend allowing rail lines to police themselves.
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    You guys would shit bricks if you knew what freight trains haul through big cities and little towns every single day.
    I hope that when the world comes to an end, I can breathe a sigh of relief, because there will be so much to look forward to. - Donnie Darko

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    Quote Originally Posted by nestlequikie View Post
    You guys would shit bricks if you knew what freight trains haul through big cities and little towns every single day.
    Unmannedfreight trains no less
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    Canadian authorities have found evidence that a criminal act may have led to a train crash in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, that killed at least 15 people, provincial police Capt. Michel Forget said Tuesday.

    There have been many questions about the crash and explosion that wiped out a swath of the town 130 miles east of Montreal. As of Tuesday evening, 35 people were still missing, Forget said.

    Authorities offered no further details about the case but said it was not caused by terrorism.

    "I will not speculate on the elements that we have recovered," Forget told reporters.

    Investigators had earlier said that they are trying to figure out whether the train's brakes were disabled before it barreled at a dangerous speed into the Quebec town, derailed and burst into a deadly inferno.

    Firefighters in the nearby town of Nantes put out a separate blaze on the train shortly before it crashed into Lac-Megantic early Saturday. Ed Burkhardt, chief executive officer and president of Rail World, the parent company of the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway, has told media outlets there's evidence the engine powering the brakes was shut down at some point.

    Pressed to elaborate by CTV, Burkhardt wrote Tuesday in an e-mail exchange, "We are now aware the firefighters shut down the locomotive. By the time (Montreal, Maine & Atlantic) people found out, it was too late."

    In earlier comments to the Montreal Gazette, he said the matter needs further investigation, and his company has begun an internal inquiry.
    Pipeline vs rail safety concerns
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    See massive fire after train derailment

    "There are a number of missing pieces here," Burkhardt told the paper, saying he didn't suspect "the event was malicious or an act of terrorism."

    The company did not immediately return phone calls from CNN about the report.

    Asked during an earlier news conference whether authorities suspected sabotage, Ed Belkaloul, manager of rail operations for Canada's Transportation Safety Board's eastern region, said there was no evidence to that effect.

    The train began rolling -- unbeknownst to dispatchers and rail traffic controllers -- about an hour after the fire in Nantes was reported. It picked up speed because the track between Nantes and Lac-Megantic lies on a 1.2% downward slope, which Belkaloul said is relatively steep.

    "On the principal lines, as soon as there is an uncontrolled movement, the controllers of rail traffic can see that there is an uncontrolled movement," Belkaloul said. But on smaller lines like the one between Nantes and Lac-Megantic, "there is no way for the dispatcher or the controller to realize that there is an uncontrolled movement."

    Seventy-two tanker cars carrying crude oil jumped the track early Saturday, setting off a huge fireball.

    Officials in Lac-Megantic say some victims were likely vaporized by the intense blaze, which burned for 36 hours after the crash.

    The fire is under control, authorities said Tuesday morning. Of the roughly 2,000 residents evacuated, about 1,200 will be permitted to return home immediately. Another 800 cannot go back yet, the officials said.

    Notices were placed on doors instructing residents how to clean and air out their homes. Officials suggested throwing out any food and boiling all water because the city's water treatment plant is not operational.

    Firefighters are now using infrared detectors to find any remaining hot spots in the wreckage. They've stopped hosing down the area because it was inhibiting the investigation, officials said.

    Rolling oil bomb?

    The train had already been on fire hours before the Saturday accident, Canadian broadcaster CBC reported, sourcing fire officials. Firefighters in the town of Nantes, seven miles northwest of Lac-Megantic, extinguished a small blaze on the freight train.

    When they left, the train was still parked where it was supposed to stay for the night, the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway said.

    Earlier, the company said air brakes holding the train in place failed, allowing it to barrel downhill into Lac-Megantic. It was not clear if Rail World executive Burkhardt was suggesting to CTV that firefighters were responsible for disabling the brakes, but he told Reuters earlier that the brakes were disabled when firefighters shut down the engine powering them.

    Investigators plan to check the brakes once the crumpled, burned tankers are accessible.

    The train rolled into town much faster than a train under an engineer's control would have.

    "Usually they're traveling between 5 and 10 miles an hour," said Quebec police officer Benoit Richard. "On that night, this train was going at least between 30 and 40 miles an hour."

    Sonia Pepin recalls hearing the train like never before. The tracks are a few feet from her home, and her whole house shook, she said.

    Investigators with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada found the locomotive event recorder, which they can analyze for information on throttle position and speed, among other data.

    Oil transport safe?

    Petroleum products have increasingly been transported via rail in the past five years, according to the railroad industry, and Canada has had multiple issues with derailments in recent months.

    Last month, four Canadian Pacific rail cars carrying flammable petrochemicals used to dilute oil derailed on a flood-damaged bridge spanning Calgary's Bow River, according to the Calgary Herald.

    In another incident involving Canadian Pacific, five tankers containing oil derailed in rural Saskatchewan in May, spilling 575 barrels of crude, the Toronto Sun reported.

    A month earlier, 22 Canadian Pacific rail cars jumped the tracks near White River, Ontario. Two of the cars leaked about 400 barrels -- almost 17,000 gallons -- of oil, The Globe and Mail in Toronto reported.

    Canadian Pacific was also involved in a stateside spill in March. Fourteen cars on a mile-long, 94-car train derailed in western Minnesota, about 150 miles northwest of Minneapolis, spilling about 30,000 gallons of crude, Reuters reported.

    A rail car can carry roughly 700 barrels of oil, with 42 gallons per barrel.

    Popular Quebec performer missing

    The runaway train rumbled toward Lac-Megantic while patrons at the Musi-Cafe were enjoying a summer night of live music. Some were sitting on the pub's front porch.

    The Musi-Cafe is no longer standing, one of an estimated 40 buildings leveled in the crash and explosions. Some of its patrons have been counted among the 13 confirmed dead.

    "We know that there will be many more," said police Lt. Michel Brunet.

    Authorities believe some of those still missing were in the pub at the time of the accident. Quebecois musician Guy Bolduc had been performing there.

    The pub's Facebook page is filling up with messages of condolence, as has a page created for the victims of the disaster. Bolduc's fans are searching for him on social media.

    "All of his fans, all over Quebec, but also his fellow singers (of whom I am one) hope to see him again alive!!! Come on my GuyBol, come out of your hiding place," one member wrote.

    "Hot zones" lingering more than two days after the train derailment hampered authorities' efforts to search for missing people.

    Forensic specialists have asked victims' families for hair samples, clothing, anything to help identify their loved ones.

    In a town of just 6,000 residents, most everyone is affected by the deaths and destruction.

    Prime Minister Stephen Harper has described the scene as a "war zone"
    http://www.cnn.com/2013/07/09/world/...runaway-train/
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowieluva View Post
    lol at Nestle being some vicious smiter, she's the nicest person on this site besides probably puzzld. Or at least the last person to resort to smiting.
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    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-23260199

    Sixty people are now thought to be dead or missing after a freight train carrying crude oil derailed and blew up in Quebec, Canadian police say.

    Authorities have asked the relatives of those still missing to provide DNA samples by bringing in toothbrushes, razors and other items.

    Chief executive of the rail company: "Our safety records are pretty good"

    But the authorities have also warned some of the bodies may have been burnt to ashes in the explosion.

    The train, carrying 72 cars of crude oil, was parked shortly before midnight on Friday in the town of Nantes about seven miles (11km) away.

    Local firefighters were later called to put out a fire on the train.

    While tackling that blaze, they shut down a locomotive that an engineer had left running to keep the brakes engaged.

    Shortly afterwards the train began moving downhill in an 18-minute journey, gathering speed until it derailed in Lac-Megantic and exploded.

    The fire department and the train's owners have appeared to point the finger at one another over the disaster.

    The train was carrying oil from the Bakken oil region in the US state of North Dakota to a refinery on the east coast of Canada
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    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/...-megantic.html


    Alongside police and emergency response crews clearing the explosion site in the downtown core of Lac-M?gantic, Que., a team of forensic investigators has begun the grisly task of recovering and identifying the remains of up to 40 people still reported missing from Saturday's horrific train crash.

    The nature of the accident ? an extremely hot explosion followed by hours of scorching fires that some witnesses' claim could be felt a kilometre away ? will make the Quebec coroner's job very difficult, experts say.

    Head of train company in Quebec derailment defends rail line's safety record

    The essential first step, according to Tracy Rogers, a forensic anthropologist at the University of Toronto, will be coordination and organization.

    "There's going to be a number of different investigative groups trying to access the scene, and there's going to be a lot happening simultaneously," says Rogers.
    A firefighter walks in the ruined downtown core of Lac-Megantic.A firefighter walks in the ruined downtown core of Lac-Megantic. (Canadian Press)

    "All of those efforts need to be coordinated right away because all these groups are searching for different kinds of evidence."

    A primary challenge will be locating human remains among the debris, which is largely all the same colour after being exposed to fire for such a long period, says Rogers.

    "Because of the range of conditions that bodies may be found in, it takes a person with a lot of experience to differentiate between what might belong to a human from what is a piece of a building, for example," she says.
    The smallest details

    Also critical to the initial investigation is what forensic scientists call the "ante-mortem," a file assembled by the police and coroner's office with help from a missing person's family and friends that contains as much information as possible about that individual.

    "There are two parts to this: a biological profile and a personal profile," says Kathy Gruspier, a Toronto-based forensic anthropologist with the government of Ontario.

    "Sex, age, race, any information at all helps develop a biological profile of the person. Then there is the personal biology, whether a person had a fractured heel at some point, for example, or any kind of medical appliance in their body," says Gruspier.

    'If a person had, say, a bump on the side of their head or a broken rib at some point in their life, an anthropologist can discern that from remains if they are preserved enough.'?Bill Inkster

    That information is then compared with any physical remains that can be found at the scene.

    According to Bill Inkster, an identification expert at the Office of the Chief Coroner in B.C., even the minutest details can help.

    "If a person had, say, a bump on the side of their head or a broken rib at some point in their life, an anthropologist can discern that from remains if they are preserved enough," Inkster says. "It's only circumstantial, but it helps to narrow down who the person might be."
    Teeth and bones

    In many instances, a dental profile can be used to identify a body, if the investigators have access to dental records from someone's life.

    But this technique presents challenges, says Rogers, because it requires that the person had enough dental work to rule out somebody else.

    In a scenario like the explosion and fire at Lac-M?gantic, investigators will likely have to rely on DNA samples from what remains there are to identify victims, says Inkster.

    "DNA techniques have advanced quite far now and, really, we can get DNA from pretty much any anything, even ancient remains, to do a DNA profile," says Gruspier.

    "There may be cases where the DNA is too degraded or contaminated, but certainly we try in any case."
    Forensic investigators have to systematically comb through the entire accident scene for physical evidence to help identify victims of the explosion. Forensic investigators have to systematically comb through the entire accident scene for physical evidence to help identify victims of the explosion. (Canadian Press)

    Once a DNA profile is obtained, investigators compare it with DNA taken from a personal item that they believe belonged to that individual, like hairbrush. If that's not available, then the second best option is to use DNA from a relative, says Gruspier.

    According to Rogers, it will take much longer to complete the victim identification than it will to collect evidence at the scene because the methodical nature of isolating usable DNA and then ruling out all other possibilities in determining a victim's identity.
    Confidence in the investigators

    Inkster says that although many of the victims' remains will likely be severely damaged by the explosion and subsequent fire, it's exceedingly rare that investigators fail to find enough physical evidence to identify remains.

    "If it was the case that people closest to the blast were completely gone, it would be devastating to the investigators. But it would be a surprise to me, in fact it would be a first for me," he says.

    According to Inkster, Quebec is well known amongst forensic professionals for the quality and dedication of its investigators.

    "I don't want to estimate how many individuals will be identified or not," he says. "But I will say this, if it's humanly possible to do it, they'll get it done in Quebec."
    Quote Originally Posted by bowieluva View Post
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    Orig FUCKING MDS lesbian sogs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nestlequikie View Post
    You guys would shit bricks if you knew what freight trains haul through big cities and little towns every single day.
    I prefer to not consider it because I can do nothing. I had when a freight train stops me because I am more afraid of the chemical spills than being smashed by a derailment.

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    Senior Member Sneakers the Wonder Dog's Avatar
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    amateur video from the night of the explosion

    http://mydeathspace.com/vb/signaturepics/sigpic83661_1.gif

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    Moderator nestlequikie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sogs View Post
    I prefer to not consider it because I can do nothing. I had when a freight train stops me because I am more afraid of the chemical spills than being smashed by a derailment.
    I worry about stuff like that, too, sogs I worry about hubby running the trains that carry that crap and about idiots who try to play beat the train at the crossing with gas trucks, etc.

    I also worry about those double trailer trucks on the interstate - especially the double cement trucks. Ugh. I am a super cautious driver thanks to MDS, though.
    I hope that when the world comes to an end, I can breathe a sigh of relief, because there will be so much to look forward to. - Donnie Darko

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    fun hater Shins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nestlequikie View Post
    You guys would shit bricks if you knew what freight trains haul through big cities and little towns every single day.
    Have any links??


    I found a great website a couple years ago that illustrated what truckers are hauling half the time. If only people knew...


    I just tried finding the site but I can't remember what it was called. Basically, if you're ever on the highway and smell rotting flesh, and you're near a top loading semi, I promise you that sucker is full of rotting animal carcasses and parts from slaughter houses and grocery stores.
    Quote Originally Posted by bowieluva View Post
    Listen, if no one cares when a crazy noodle walks in and executes children with a gun, no one cares about anything.

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    Senior Member Venus2B's Avatar
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    This whole story breaks my heart.

    I live in a town built around the CP Rail, and it's amazing what is carried on these trains. I feel so terrible for the engineer, the volunteer fire department and the whole community.

    Sadly, finger pointing is going to happen. But what needs to happen most is people looking after each other and supporting those that have lost loved ones.

    This is an accident that really could happen anywhere.


    Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside. - Mark Twain

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    Senior Member morbid1's Avatar
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    I think I heard "fuck". but I have no idea what hes saying. Anyone speak french?

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    Senior Member morbid1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sneakers the Wonder Dog View Post
    amateur video from the night of the explosion

    sorry double post because I forgot to quote with the video. There were some "oh my gods" after 4:00 -- still watching. Sad stuff.

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    Senior Member Sneakers the Wonder Dog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by morbid1 View Post
    I think I heard "fuck". but I have no idea what hes saying. Anyone speak french?
    He repeats "Fucking hell" several times

    President of the rail road showed up in the town today and blamed the fireman for the explosions
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    Senior Member Venus2B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sneakers the Wonder Dog View Post
    He repeats "Fucking hell" several times

    President of the rail road showed up in the town today and blamed the fireman for the explosions
    President of the railroad is a supreme douche. Was NOT the fault of the firemen (who are volunteers, putting their lives at risk cleaning up his mess). Firemen did what they were supposed to do and reported to the correct people on what they did do. It was the rail companies job to make sure the train was secured AFTER the firemen saved it.

    Shame on him.


    Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside. - Mark Twain

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    Senior Member Venus2B's Avatar
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    Sorry for double post.

    http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Canada/2.../20964861.html

    MONTREAL — The engineer of the train that derailed and exploded in Lac-Megantic, Que., on Saturday may have failed to set the train's brakes, the train company's CEO admitted to reporters while visiting the grief-stricken town Wednesday.

    Ed Burkhardt, chairman of the Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway, said it was his engineer's responsibility to set the adequate numbers of handbrakes after he parked the train at the Nantes' station Friday night, 12 km west uphill from Lac-Megantic.

    "He did something wrong," Burkhardt told a throng of aggressive reporters. "He has been suspended and he is not working. I don't think he'll be back working for us. That's my personal opinion."

    The engineer, who has been identified as Tom Harding, is under police investigation, the CEO said.


    Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside. - Mark Twain

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    Quote Originally Posted by bowieluva View Post
    lol at Nestle being some vicious smiter, she's the nicest person on this site besides probably puzzld. Or at least the last person to resort to smiting.
    Quote Originally Posted by nestlequikie View Post
    Why on earth would I smite you when I can ban you?

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    Quote Originally Posted by bowieluva View Post
    lol at Nestle being some vicious smiter, she's the nicest person on this site besides probably puzzld. Or at least the last person to resort to smiting.
    Quote Originally Posted by nestlequikie View Post
    Why on earth would I smite you when I can ban you?

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