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Eastern Railroad Discussion > Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power sour


Date: 07/24/03 15:07
Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power sour
Author: swsf

During a recent trip on the Canadian a mention was made by a fellow passenger of a diesel loco used somewhere in Canada for emergency power during a severe storm. It seems that it was moved under it\'s own power down a city street - no rails! - to a location where it could tie into the city\'s power grid. Anyone have the story and/or pics?

Thanks!

Rick



Date: 07/24/03 15:26
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: jgilmore

Rick,

That\'s a true story. While I can\'t seem to recall any of the details, I distinctly remember reading about this emergency short-term power solution in an article in the NY Times (and a few rail mags later on) about the terrible ice storm that hit eastern Canada a couple of years ago. I forget the year and exact location, but it was either in Ontario or Quebec where this loco was hooked up to a town\'s power lines in a remote location so that more disaster could be averted since everyone/thing was freezing and help seemed too far away or whatever. Quite a novel and unique way to deal with what proved to be a major catastrophe, eh? Maybe some local Canucks can fill in the particulars about all this...Also, I\'m pretty sure you\'re correct about driving this thing down the street under its own power. Talk about wide right turns!

Joel Gilmore
Alburtis, PA



Date: 07/24/03 15:40
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: zars

That is correct. CN provided locomotives at several locations in Quebec after the devastating ice storm in January 1998. This ice storm destroyed, not just damaged, much of the power grid in southern Quebec. It bent high-tension towers to the ground! Most stayed on the rail where they could get near the faciltiy that needed the power. But, TRAINS Magazine had a photograph of the one unit, I believe it was in Montreal, that was purposely derailed and moved under its own power down the street to the location where the power was needed.



Date: 07/24/03 16:43
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: jallgo1

That is unbelievable I\'ve never in my whole life seen a locomotive go down a street. How can it do that??



Date: 07/24/03 19:09
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: emd_run8

It\'s true. The Alco ran down the street under it\'s own power. A crane lifted the ends to reposition the trucks to steer the loco to place. Interesting is the calculations as to the rpm\'s to run the engine to provide the correct electrical output. I also saw a video of the power tower line actually falling. It was something I\'ll never forget. Long live Alco\'s.
TV



Date: 07/25/03 11:51
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: hoops

Well when it is 20 below I imagine the street is so forzen the flanges don\'t really do anything except roll right on top of the ground.



Date: 07/26/03 11:28
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: jonnycando

I remeber seeing that maybe in Trains mag. It was an Alco Montreal Widebody from the early seventies, and CN lifted it off the rail and drove it to Town Hall a short distance on the frozen street, no doubt it left grooves and compromised the wheelset somewhat.



Date: 03/26/08 08:23
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: greendot

Correct regarding engine speed. To use a locomotive as an emergency generator, you have to run the engine at the correct speed to generate AC at commercial frequency (60 hertz or cycles per second on North America). With an EMD GP38-2, for example, instead of running the engine at "notch 8" "locomotive speed", the engine would be operated at 720 RPM which would produce 60 hertz AC directly from the traction alternator. And that would be at a lower power output as well, probably around 1400 HP instead of the "notch 8" 2000 HP rating.



Date: 03/26/08 10:11
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: Lackawanna484

greendot Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Correct regarding engine speed. To use a
> locomotive as an emergency generator, you have to
> run the engine at the correct speed to generate AC
> at commercial frequency (60 hertz or cycles per
> second on North America). With an EMD GP38-2, for
> example, instead of running the engine at "notch
> 8" "locomotive speed", the engine would be
> operated at 720 RPM which would produce 60 hertz
> AC directly from the traction alternator. And that
> would be at a lower power output as well, probably
> around 1400 HP instead of the "notch 8" 2000 HP
> rating.

Boucherville, Quebec, 1998

There were pictures in several of the rail magazines about the idling engines and their use as portable generators. These were real jobs, with engineers assigned to oversee the speed settings 24/7, and fuel trucks detailed to refuel the power as needed.

this article mentions that DEVCO had several specially equipped locomotives used to provide emergency power in the Maritimes.

http://www.haya.qc.ca/storm.htm

There's no real reason why you couldn't hook up an extension cord to a nuclear aircraft carrier or submarine and light up a good sized town, I suspect.



Date: 03/26/08 14:24
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: CR6079

If you can find yourself an issue of the March 98 issue of Railpace there is a picture of M420W 3502 "PARKED" in the street in front of Boucherville,Que. City Hall.



Date: 02/27/10 14:06
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: gregtravis

When I was doing some research for an article on Amtrak a few years ago, Marc Magliari (Amtrak spokesperson) gave me an account of them (Amtrak) trying a locomotive into the power grid at New Orleans Union Terminal during the Katrina aftermath to provide power to the immediate neighborhood.



Date: 02/27/10 15:38
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: wabash2800

EMD and perhaps some other locomotive manufacturers built self contained diesel eingines with generators that looked like containers for many years and many were shippped to remote locations around the world.

Railroad Model Craftsman had an article specfically on these units with photos and drawings within the last year or so.



Date: 01/09/17 07:41
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: HB90MACH

With the new self contained dcc battery systems (previously only a large scale thing) now avaliable in ho, you can now model that operation.



Date: 01/09/17 08:21
Re: Loco driven on Canadian street for emergency power
Author: sixaxlecentury




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