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Passenger Trains > NEC--track maintainance

Date: 06/07/01 06:32
NEC--track maintainance
Author: floridajoe2001

Please say it isn't so. Recent post have indicated Amtrak has cut track maintaince between NY-Was.

I assume this is just "railfan talk" without factual basis. Wouldn't it be absured to downgrade the tracks utilized by Acela, upon which their future depends? Would they downgrade the tracks into Washington, the town upon which thier financial future depends?

Am I correct, or does anyone have details on this subject?

Date: 06/07/01 07:31
RE: NEC--track maintainance
Author: dchui

Amtrak has been saying for years that they have been unable to properly maintain the NY-DC section of the NEC, and that massive capital funding is needed to correct its deficiencies and bring it up to the same standards as New Haven-Boston (which has been the focus of capital funds in recent years).

NY-DC is arguably the only rail corridor in the country where Important People(tm) take the train and appreciate about its existence. If NY-DC deteriorates enough to get attention, it could stand a decent chance of getting some kind of capital funding appropriated. At least, it makes more people aware of Amtrak's capital needs.

Date: 06/07/01 08:39
RE: NEC--track maintainance
Author: Jaap

are you sure about the NEC or is it the NECR.
two different things
NEC is North East Corridor a Amtrak property
NECR is New England Central Railroad a property the vermonter travels over. Amtrak does not do the track maintenance there.

Date: 06/07/01 09:34
RE: NEC--track maintainance
Author: crazy_nip

wouldnt surprise me one bit... PENN CENTRAL here we come!!!

Date: 06/07/01 09:53
RE: NEC--track maintainance
Author: CharlieA.

I don't believe that the initial question raised infered the current track maintenance problems encountered by the "Vermonter" on the NECR.

In fact, the NEC from Washington, DC to New Rochelle... we won't even bring up the continuing "works in Progress" by Metro-North or the current rock stability problems east of New Haven, is not up to the standards that Amtrak or the riding public would like. Keep in mind this very important point - THE NEC IS SAFE! Not at all like the recent problems encountered by CSX. Also remember that current FRA track standards are extremely high... as train speed goes up, tolerances get exponentially "tighter" - allowed deviations measured in fractions of an inch. The technology utilized to measure these tolerances is significantly better than it was 10 years ago... high speed test/geometry cars are now a normal part of any rail fleet - freight or Amtrak.

With this said... the ride quality along the NEC is not up to par! Just the ride through any interlocking at high speed is a "dead" give away to this fact. This situation being the result of restricted availability of "MONEY"! Amtrak personnel from George Warrington down have done a valiant - although thankless, job of keep the trains rolling. There are just so many things going on in Amtrak's "court" these days, I marvel at their ability to remain professional railroaders.

If Amtrak does reach a level of "self sufficiency" the situation is not likely to improve... especially under the current rules of engagement and accounting. As I recall, a smooth ride is accounted for under routine maintenance and not capital investment... although those accounting lines have "blured" in recent times. A $100 Billion investment in passenger rail is still a "drop in the bucket", but, would reap extremely significant rewards... look back to the days of FDR and the rewards reaped by both PRR and the public when the corridor was electrified.

Yes, there are a lot of rumors in the fan community... some with substance most, unfortunately trash. The only realistic way one can tell if the ROW is goin' to hell is to get out there and ride. But, then what would be the "frame of reference" standard used since few fans ride trains regularly - here or abroad!

Date: 06/07/01 15:28
RE: NEC--track maintainance
Author: SLR62

They should just 150 lb jointed rail it again :)

Date: 06/08/01 06:13
RE: NEC--track maintainance
Author: floridajoe2001

CharlieA, I like your comments very much---well thought out and reasonable.

I will be on the Corridor June 14-17 and will report back my impression of track riding quality.

I know those turn-outs have been rough for years. I want to see if Acela takes them better that Amfleet.

Date: 06/08/01 16:24
RE: NEC--track maintainance
Author: amtraker1028

NO track service has been reduced NOR are any reductions planned.

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