Trains July 2019


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United States
Kalmbach Publishing Co. - Magazines
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12 Numeri

in questo numero

2 min
welcome back, no. 4014 @TrainsMagazine @trains_magazine In May, Union Pacific inaugurated Big Boy No. 4014 with a show-stopping victory lap on its historic route between Cheyenne, Wyo., and Ogden, Utah. Thousands showed up, and UP, much as it did with the Bush Funeral Train last December, got tons of great ink and air time. The engine also did a lot for the long-term outlook for both enthusiasts and professionals. Big Boy has the power to attract and keep a crowd. Watch those two sets of main rods moving back and forth, and it’s like watching a sprinter’s legs in slow motion. I predict that Big Boy in steam will be the gateway to a whole new generation of railroad enthusiasts. It’s also a way to attract people who will want to make railroading their life’s work because it…

1 min
on the web

TRAINS BLOGS Check out what Trains’ staff and contributors say about railroads and train-watching. Photo by George W. Hamlin TRAINS INSTAGRAM Share your photos and videos with @trains_magazine. Photo by Brian Schmidt TRAINS NEWS WIRE Subscribers can access all the latest railroad industry news and updates to stories daily. Photo by David Lassen TRAINS NEWSLETTER Sign up on our homepage for a free weekly email newsletter to learn what’s in our latest issue, get hot news, watch videos, sign up for trips and events, and more. Photo illustration by Tom Danneman Follow us on @trains_magazine…

5 min
wheel rail interaction conference 2019

For those of us who have attended or participated in the annual Wheel Rail Interaction conference over the past 25 years, the conference speaks for itself. What started as a one-off seminar with three speakers and the opinions of a room full of die-hard rail maintenance experts has expanded to a three-part conference with more than 35 speakers (and a room full of die-hard maintenance experts) addressing the latest practices and technologies to manage wheel/rail interaction. The success of WRI and everything the industry has learned from it, is owed to its founder and chief enthusiast, Gordon Bachinsky. But don’t take my word for it, see what a few of those die-hards have to say about 25 years of WRI. — Bob Tuzik, Executive Program Director, Wheel Rail Seminars I have attended WRI…

6 min
steven ditmeyer

STEVEN DITMEYER’S long career in railroading and related industries began as a transportation trainee for the Missouri Pacific Railroad. He has been a transportation economist at The World Bank; chief engineer of research, communications, and control systems at Burlington Northern; and held positions with the Federal Railroad Administration. He is currently the principal at Transportation Technology and Economics, an industry consultant. Q As a longtime participant with and observer of railroads, what is your opinion of the state of the overall industry? A The railroads are quite profitable these days. Most of the big ones have adopted Precision Scheduled Railroading, which in my view is neither precision nor scheduled. It’s a phrase to describe a strategy that involves reducing the asset base of the railroads, tearing up double track, closing yards, closing…

1 min
news briefs

VIRGIN TRAINS USA, the rebranded Brightline passenger service in Florida, raised $3.5 billion through two sets of bond sales in April. The company said after the second sale that construction would begin “immediately” on its expansion to serve Orlando. It also announced it would begin service to Disney World and a connection to commuter operator SunRail at the same time it starts service to Orlando International Airport. UNION PACIFIC halted construction on its massive Brazos hump yard in Texas and idled humps at yards in Hinkle, Ore., and Pine Bluff, Ark., as part of its “Unified Plan 2020” version of Precision Scheduled Railroading. Money originally ticketed for Brazos will be used for improvements on the Sunset Route — sidings and a yard in Santa Teresa, N.M. — railroad officials said during…

2 min
diving into the crescent’s woes

REPORT CARDS never tell the whole story, and Amtrak’s annual evaluation of host railroad on-time performance is no exception. Court decisions have voided punctuality metrics established in 2008’s Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act, as well as Amtrak’s ability to legally enforce — or even define — the statutory “priority” over freight trains it was granted in 1973. Thus, it has resorted to publicly honoring or shaming railroads for handling of its trains [see “Amtrak Slammed by Delays,” “Passenger,” October 2018]. The version for 2018 assigns an “A” to Canadian Pacific and an “F” to Norfolk Southern, based on each host railroad’s ability to deliver state-supported trains within 15 minutes of scheduled arrivals 80% of the time. For long distance trains, the figure is 70%. An Amtrak attempt to call attention to the…