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Passenger Trains > Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?


Date: 09/10/19 22:11
Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: GenePoon

There are reports that Amtrak, by not reporting correct train status,
has been suckering Michigan DOT, which like other states contracting
with Amtrak to operate their trains, has a clause in their Amtrak
contract that credits them financially when a train is late.
Example: Wolverine Train 352(07).

352 hasn’t arrived OT at its final terminal Pontiac since Aug 16,
and it looked like it might do it on September 7.  But wait...

After leaving Detroit the train was delayed by CN train 121 which
broke down in the interlocking at Milwaukee Junction.  This blocked
the only route to the Holly subdivision and Pontiac. The Amtrak crew
eventually went dead on hours.  A recrew was called but by that time
the freight train needed a recrew themselves.  352(07) ended up
arriving into Pontiac at 10:57 pm.

Dixieland has no status on 352(07).

Amtrak train status has 352(07) into Detroit four minutes late.
Looking good, right?

But for Pontiac, Amtrak train status still shows an estimated arrival
at 835pm, three minutes late.  As noted above, it didn't happen.

But what DID happen?

CNOC turned off the GPS on the lead unit as soon as the delay
started.  For a train status to be reported at end terminal, it
doesn't matter any more if there is a human to enter it (the staffing
at the Pontiac, MI station ends daily at 6pm); the GPS creates an
arrival time in Arrow as soon as the lead unit reaches the station.
So, by turning off the GPS, which CNOC can do remotely from Delaware,
there is no arrival time entered for Pontiac, and the report to
Michigan DOT says it arrived on time...check on Amtrak.com; the train
is still showing an estimated arrival three minutes late, which is
within tolerance.

This kind of thing has happened before...reports say that MichDOT is getting
suckered over and over!



Date: 09/11/19 02:58
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: OTG

The failure of the automated system to report the arrival of a train at the final destination is and has been an ongoing glitch for years now.  It's not a conspiracy.  The time the Conductor enters on their delay report is the official time, and there would be a lot to lose if Amtrak were caught modifying the Conductor's report.

352:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/352

All of these trains which originated on the same date are also missing arrival times at their endpoints.  If Amtrak is falsifying delay repors by turning off GPS, then it's a pretty widespread (and poorly hidden) conspiracy.
1:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/1
3:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/3
4:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/4
5:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/5
6:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/6
7:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/7
8:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/8
11:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/11
14:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/14
19:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/19
20:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/20
21:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/21
22:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/22
53:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/07/53
52:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/07/52
58:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/58
59:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/59
99:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/99
160:  https://asm.transitdocs.com/train/2019/9/7/160 

Now this is just a small spattering of trains. I didn't bother looking at state supported trains because this should be enough to make my point (I did make sure to include an NEC train, because Amtrak has no state supporter to bother suckering there).  There are far more pressing things going on at Amtrak, we don't need to take a computer glitch and turn it into the next James Bond plot just to trash them.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/11/19 03:01 by OTG.



Date: 09/11/19 04:11
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: Englewood

In the 80's it was SOP in Chicago to show late departing trains as OT.
They finally got caught by at least one railroad that was looking into 
their incentive pay.  Amtrak has always been a liars game.



Date: 09/11/19 06:58
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: dispr

First, I'd like to see some proof that someone can remotely turn off the GPS tracking on an engine.

Second, railroads (passenger and freight) have been lying about departure times, arrival times, run times, dwell, etc for many years. The freight railroads are notorious for doing this.

I expect that the State of Michigan has several check and balance procedures in place to verify the information provided by Amtrak.

 



Date: 09/11/19 07:17
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: Dcmcrider

When it comes to such things, it might be wise to deploy Hanlon's Razor, "don't attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by incompetence (or stupidity.)"

Paul Wilson
Arlington, VA



Date: 09/11/19 09:51
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: GenePoon

Note that an Amtrak manager was fired for falsifying Michigan on-time performance reports.  It is
said that he did it not to cheat Michigan, but because he was being badgered by one of his superiors
(himself now fired and disgraced); however it is probable that the superior was being badgered over
lost State subsidy revenue due to poor on-time performance.



Date: 09/11/19 13:51
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: KV1guy

I think its actually the lounge GPS that is tracked. .

Posted from Android



Date: 09/11/19 15:09
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: MNNRfan

Isn't it similar circumstances, Amtrak cooking the OTP, in Illinois that led to the Downfall of Travis, Louis Pesevic and Benton Allen (think that's his name)?

Posted from Android



Date: 09/11/19 16:48
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: PC1974

That's already an old story, lets move on to 355(11) that departed 1 hr 26 civilized minutes late from PNT. Stopped now at Milwaukee Jct, loosing time... Amtrak's Midwest High Speed Rail is sure getting done in Michigan!



Date: 09/11/19 17:53
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: joemvcnj

I think if they spent just $1 Billion to restore the North Coast Hiawatha, we would have gotten more bang (and passenger miles) for the buck. The Michigan service is a disgrace and running the same exact Pontiac/Detroit service of 3 frequencies that Penn Central was running 50 years ago.



Date: 09/11/19 17:59
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: renf

   This summer seems to be a particularly difficult one for Amtrak to get their eastbound across the Michigan Central line from
Porter to Detroit.  Does anyone undetstand why there are so many consistent delays in getting the varnish to stay on the
card?



Date: 09/12/19 14:53
Re: Amtrak suckering Michigan DOT over on-time performance?
Author: Englewood

joemvcnj Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I think if they spent just $1 Billion to restore
> the North Coast Hiawatha, we would have gotten
> more bang (and passenger miles) for the buck. The
> Michigan service is a disgrace and running the
> same exact Pontiac/Detroit service of 3
> frequencies that Penn Central was running 50 years
> ago.

In this post on the Nostalgia board I mentioned the wisdom (or lack of it ) in the selection
of the PC route from the perspective of 1970.

https://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?11,4864266

Just another Amtrak playground.  Take on all the responsibility of track ownership,
fiddle around for decades with ITCS (or whatever it is called) when conventional cab
signals could have been used, de-staff the stations, etc.  Just another s*** show.



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