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Trains May 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.
flourishing or floundering

Resiliency is one of the hallmarks of American railway preservation. We have great museums. We have gorgeous restored steam and diesel passenger and freight trains. We have entire railroads thanks to the tenacity of impassioned individuals who didn’t know the meaning of the word “stop.” Others have faced adversity and come back stronger than ever based on the will of those entrusted with these treasures. The Nevada State Railway Museum, pictured below and part of Dave Crosby’s West Coast steam tour on page 26, is a good example. Heavily damaged by flooding in early 2017, it was back and better than ever by the time Dave got there last summer. Sparkling jewels like the Inyo steam locomotive attest to good people, grit, and determination that made it so. And yet, the struggle…

1 Min.
lack of safety tech is making headlines

POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROL UPDATE Agitated members of Congress are joining media outlets to say they’re displeased with U.S. railroads’ progress on meeting a Dec. 31 deadline for installing positive train control nationwide. U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., told rail and federal leaders at a March 1 Senate hearing that he wanted to get someone’s attention who can do something as “patience is running out.” Wicker’s comments came on the heels of a U.S. Government Accountability Office report that shows certain railroads’ problems installing PTC are compounded by an understaffed Federal Railroad Administration. Report writers say the agency gives railroads informal, inconsistent information on how to apply for a deadline extension based on the agency’s six criteria (see page 7.) That report generated more media coverage for railroads such as NJ Transit, which is one…

1 Min.
opinions about ptc as the deadline looms

“We warned Congress in 2015 that their actions would result in people dying from collisions that PTC could prevent. Congress was convinced by the railroad industry that more time was needed. Here we are years later and PTC is not fully implemented. Safety has waited too long and lives have been lost during the last extension.” — Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen Vice President and National Legislative Representative John P. Tolman. BNSF Railway is 100 percent complete with PTC installation, which will give the railroad a head start on moving PTC from an “unfunded mandate” to what Norfolk Southern calls the “backbone of the future digital railway.” — independent analyst Anthony B. Hatch of ABH Consulting “Our implementation on our railroad has not had a lot of challenges. Now that being…

1 Min.
fra’s six criteria for ptc extensions

Railroads must meet six criteria with the Federal Railroad Administration if a railroad’s executives want an extension to keep working on positive train control past the Dec. 31 deadline. Officials with the Government Accountability Office say in a March 1 report that seven to 19 commuter railroads in the U.S. have not given their workers enough time to complete the milestones to qualify for waivers for full positive train control operation. The report authors say that the biggest problem for commuter railroads is the sixth requirement, a revenue service demonstration. They cite FRA experts saying it can take 1 to 3 years from the beginning of field tests — where trains are not relying on PTC systems, but are connected to the systems — to the start of revenue demonstrations. The accountability…

2 Min.
but will amtrak run intercity trains?

In two appearances before Congress, Amtrak CEO Richard Anderson pledged that all Amtrak locomotives will be PTC-capable by Dec. 31, but even if the Federal Railroad Administration deems a route to be eligible for an alternate implementation schedule, he asserts, “the question we must ask ourselves is whether we continue to operate over such routes until PTC is turned on and if so, what additional safety precautions are appropriate to reduce risks?” In prepared remarks for Congress, Anderson says, “if a train operates over routes identified by the FRA as eligible for ‘mainline track exclusion’ (of PTC requirements) owing to light passenger traffic or lack of hazardous material freight trains, we are currently reviewing our policy… to determine whether we have adequate safety mitigation practices in place for each territory, and…

4 Min.
csx execs’ three-year plan for growth

Faster, more dependable service will enable CSX Transportation to better compete with trucks, charge higher rates, and grow intermodal and merchandise traffic over the next three years, executives say. The comments came during a March 1 investor conference in New York City. The legacy of E. Hunter Harrison, who died in December after 10 months as CEO, loomed large at the conference. Executives repeatedly praised his transformation of a railroad in need of change, despite the service problems that came from Harrison’s rapid-fire rollout of Precision Scheduled Railroading. CSX CEO James Foote says that while he had to apologize to shippers for a summer of service failures after Harrison “carpetbombed” the network with change, virtually overnight, he has nothing to apologize for: CSX’s service metrics lead the industry, with trains moving 30 percent…