Readers React: It’s foolish to spend anything on a bullet train when we should invest in fighting wildfires

An elevated section of high-speed rail track is under construction in Fresno on Dec. 6, 2017.
(Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

To the editor: Multiple articles in the Los Angeles Times have reported on the vast cost overruns and long delays in acquiring land for and building the California high-speed rail system.

With the recent deadly wildfires in our state and the many more to come that will make such disasters our “new normal,” I think we need to stop work on the high-speed train and invest billions instead in wildfire prevention, better methods for fighting fires, upgraded emergency alert systems, better infrastructure for evacuation and, especially, new technologies to “scrub” our air.

The death toll from these latest fires will never accurately be known because the elderly, the young, the sick and the frail will die prematurely because of the heart and lung conditions aggravated by the hazardous air quality.

Jessea Greenman, Oakland



To the editor: With the latest cost-overrun estimates, it is worth considering putting on hold bullet train funds and using some (or all) of them to acquire water-dropping and fire-retardant planes and helicopters. I wonder how a vote on that would turn out.

We have enough alternatives to get from Los Angeles to San Francisco — via airplane, automobile or train. After the devastating loss of life and property these last two weeks, Californians might want to reconsider their spending priorities.

Raymond Laser, Camarillo


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