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Dear Do-It Man: How do you go about getting permission to ride in pick-up trucks that go along railroad tracks? My 83-year-old father wants to ride in one.

- C.Q., Salt Lake City.

Dear C.Q.: You can always ask, but expect to get "no" for an answer. According to a spokesman for Union Pacific, "we simply don't do that as a matter of policy."

Only railroad employees are allowed to occupy vehicles that ride on the tracks. And only railroad employees are allowed to drive on roads that follow alongside the tracks. "There are service roads by all of our tracks but that's our property," said the spokesman. "Only railroad employees are allowed on those roads."

Crews that ride the tracks are inspecting them for maintenance problems.

Dear Do-It Man: I am trying to find out what happened to the Ortho Mattress store on about 60th South and State St. About three years ago I purchased a mattress for a mechanical bed there. The mattress has a five-year guarantee and now a wire is poking out the side. I would like to know where I can take it to have it fixed under warranty.

- J.M., Bountiful.

Dear J.M.: Ortho Mattress Co., which has its headquarters in Los Angeles, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last December. The company closed its Salt Lake store in January.

The good news is the company emerged from Chapter 11 on Oct. 20, and is operating under a plan for reorganization approved by creditors.

The bad news is that doesn't do you any good. The company is not honoring warranties in Utah. It did not authorize a mattress manufacturer here to do warranty work.

You have a couple of options but they will cost you money.

The factory in Los Angeles will fix your mattress under warranty but you must pay for the shipping, and that, we suspect, won't be cheap.

Or, you could take the mattress to a local manufacturer, (they are listed in the Yellow Pages), and have it repair the mattress at your expense.

Vitamin B cancer

A lack of a B-vitamin may increase the risk of developing colon cancer, say researchers at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston.

The cancer threat was pinpointed during tests on laboratory rats that were deprived of folate, a common B-vitamin that occurs in green leafy veggies, orange and grapefruit juice, chicken, liver, bread and other foods. - Scripps Howard News Service.