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Trains

Trains February 2018

TRAINS IS THE #1 MAGAZINE AMONG RAILROAD ENTHUSIASTS! EACH ISSUE IS PACKED WITH PROBING FEATURES, RAILROAD NEWS, EXPERT COMMENTARY, CUTTING-EDGE INDUSTRY REPORTS, DETAILED MAPS AND SPECTACULAR PHOTOGRAPHY COVERING RAILROADING’S INFLUENTIAL HISTORY AND EXCITING FUTURE.

Land:
United States
Sprache:
English
Verlag:
Kalmbach Publishing Co. - Magazines
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2 Min.
from the editor

It’s a streamliner world after all Our cover subject, the reborn Clinchfield No. 800, has been an icon for most of its career. How many first diesel locomotives are still out there, in operating condition, and get to ply their home rails? Not many, and certainly not that many that at age 70 are running and in fresh paint. This month, we celebrate No. 800 as a fine example of the great American streamliner, also commonly referred to as a cab unit or a covered wagon. It is hard to believe that the earliest survivors of dieselization’s first wave of road units are pushing 80. These units have a special place in American railroading. Just as steam power represents an early era, these colorful classics represent mid-century change and transition. They’re the…

4 Min.
nothing runs like a ... ge?

GE axing its locomotive manufacturing unit brings an end to one of GE’s oldest businesses and shakes up one of the world’s oldest locomotive makers. In statements about restructuring the entire company in November, GE executives said they want complete sales or transfers within the next year or two. Assuming GE Corp. does something other than completely shut down the business or spin it off, what may happen next? GE-ALSTOM-SIEMENS If Alstom and Siemens can merge, as the European companies announced in October, why not Alstom, Siemens, and GE? Pros: Officials from both European companies say they want to better compete with China’s CRRC — already the world’s largest railroad builder and supplier. And GE Transportation would fill a niche that neither company has: heavy-haul dieselelectric locomotives. Plus Siemens and Alstom have as…

2 Min.
an upside-down world

“Extremely strong franchise,” is how new General Electric CEO John Flannery describes GE Transportation, the world’s dominant producer of diesel-electric locomotives. So why is GE Transportation up for sale? GE, a conglomerate in flux, has disappointing financial results and is under pressure from Wall Street and an activist investor to cut costs and boost profits. The giant company is slimming down to three core businesses — aviation, power, and healthcare — that have strong growth prospects, high profit margins, and are predictable each year. GE Transportation simply does not measure up. “The businesses that don’t fit this screen are not necessarily bad businesses,” Flannery told investors on Nov. 13. “There may be a value-creation opportunity and a future for those businesses that’s better in some other form or construct than inside of…

2 Min.
ge’s business besides rail

GE Transportation does more than build locomotives. But just how much more is the question potential investors in the business are likely to ask before agreeing to buy into it. As of 2017, GE’s transportation business division based in Chicago handles two big industries: railroads and mining. RAILROADS AND MINING ARE GE TRANSPORTATION’S PRIME INDUSTRIES. The railroad side is encompassed by two overlapping product lines: the Global Locomotive organization and the Global Services organization. Locomotive produces new and refurbished freight and passenger locomotives; control systems; and support equipment. The organization is also responsible for locomotive parts. Much of this has been traditionally done at the company’s Erie, Pa., facility. GE officials announced plans to end locomotive assembly in Erie by the end of 2018, favoring its location in Fort Worth, Texas. Large…

4 Min.
news briefs

ProgressRail invests more in Australia In a move to further complement its rolling stock services portfolio, Progress Rail, a Caterpillar company, has signed an agreement to acquire Downer EDI’s freight rail business. Headquartered in Australia and with 15 maintenance facilities strategically located throughout the continent, Downer Freight Rail provides a full suite of rolling stock, aftermarket parts, and services. Upon completion, the acquisition will significantly strengthen Progress Rail’s existing Australian footprint, which includes rolling stock maintenance facilities as well as infrastructure and signaling facilities. TransCanada’s Keystone oil pipeline resumed operating at a reduced pressure after the pipeline spilled some 5,000 barrels of oil in South Dakota in mid-November — or the equivalent of about seven 30,000-gallon railroad tank cars. The pipeline is designed to carry up to 590,000 barrels of oil per…

4 Min.
‘one tough cookie’

Juanita Campbell was a 74-year-old grandmother who a friend called “one tough cookie.” What’s more, she was a locomotive engineer on Norfolk Southern who said she would work till she could no longer climb on the locomotive. On Oct. 31, she was found dead in her home, perhaps from a heart attack. She did not live long enough to retire, and she worked to the end. Another NS engineer, Nick Pettit, said in an email that Campbell was “tough as nails.” He said, “One thing is for sure. There will never be another Juanita ‘Nee Nee’ Campbell.” Campbell signed on with Norfolk Southern in 1998 after driving for a van company to shuttle NS crews around. Pettit said he was her conductor for nearly two years, running from Manassas, Va., to Hagerstown,…