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Date: 05/07/22 05:35
Window cleanliness?
Author: Chessie1963

I have noticed that no one has commented on dirty windows lately...has Amtrak gone back to cleaning its trains?  

Little changes like that may indicate progress at Amtrak with respect to hiring, etc.



Date: 05/07/22 05:56
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: regalstream1516

Warmer weather allows for the Sunnyside, Boston, Washington (Ivy City) and Chicago car washers to be used again, if they are functional.  Still no cleaning of 27/28 in Portland.  Still no cleaning in San Antonio.  Someone in the southeast might know if Miami (Hialeah) has a functioning car washer.  I know Hialeah was down for an extended period of time, and may be lost altogether.  Let's hope not.   Los Angeles, New 0rleans, and Seattle, and perhaps Oakland, are places where the washers are used pretty much all year long.



Date: 05/07/22 06:35
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: Jimbo

A friend was on the westbound Cardinal and California Zephyr recently.  The Cardinall was dirty but the CZ was very clean.



Date: 05/07/22 07:30
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: alan2955

regalstream1516 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Warmer weather allows for the Sunnyside, Boston,
> Washington (Ivy City) and Chicago car washers to
> be used again, if they are functional.  Still no
> cleaning of 27/28 in Portland.  Still no cleaning
> in San Antonio.  Someone in the southeast might
> know if Miami (Hialeah) has a functioning car
> washer.  I know Hialeah was down for an extended
> period of time, and may be lost altogether. 
> Let's hope not.   Los Angeles, New 0rleans, and
> Seattle, and perhaps Oakland, are places where the
> washers are used pretty much all year long.


Sadly the Chicago car washer wasn’t being used last fall even in mild weather. The mid October Empire Builder’s I rode were filthy in both directions. I’m not sure if they ever got it working again or not. I saw the Silver Star in Florida several times this winter and it was disgustingly filthy on the exterior, like it doesn’t get washed at either end for many weeks. One car was mysteriously shining clean and I asked the attendant why was that. He replied it had just come out of its periodic maintenance, and they actually wash them there! 🙄 Just another example of Steven Gardner’s total disregard for the long distance trains. Amtrak used to be pretty good about keeping the exterior of trains clean, but that’s gone down the drain too.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 05/07/22 07:40
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: ccn511

I've recently seen windows washed during stops on #5 in Denver and #4 in Albuquerque.



Date: 05/07/22 08:44
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: jp1822

Thousands of dollars spent for a bedroom accommodation on LD trains and dirty windows are a hallmark! YEARS ago they would wash the Empire Builder's windows on day two in Montana (can't remember if it was Shelby or Havre). Didn't last long. But that would even help out tremendously for this particular train! It was a manual process with a team of four washers. 



Date: 05/07/22 10:27
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: alan2955

jp1822 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Thousands of dollars spent for a bedroom
> accommodation on LD trains and dirty windows are a
> hallmark! YEARS ago they would wash the Empire
> Builder's windows on day two in Montana (can't
> remember if it was Shelby or Havre). Didn't last
> long. But that would even help out tremendously
> for this particular train! It was a manual process
> with a team of four washers. 

Worse yet they don’t even wash the train in Chicago or Seattle regularly! I have $3000 of Amtrak points I could be using, but the service is so poor these days it makes me reluctant to even go.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 05/07/22 11:06
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: fooshie

I rode the Crescent and Sunset Limited in early March. If I recall correctly, the Crescent's windows were fine but could have used some improvement. However, the Sunset Limited was sparking clean inside and out.



Date: 05/07/22 11:15
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: dan

the chi car washer was not used during some trackwork  that took foreever to fix, way too long, the empire builder used to have mid point hand washing , but i guess this went away awhile ago, what about the sunset, too nice down there to warrant?



Date: 05/07/22 11:19
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: ABB

I was in Miami last week on AAPRCO special and saw the Silver Star being washed on at least 2 different days.

Posted from Android



Date: 05/07/22 11:26
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: alan2955

ABB Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I was in Miami last week on AAPRCO special and saw
> the Silver Star being washed on at least 2
> different days.
>
> Posted from Android

That’s good news, because it had not been happening in Miami for quite some time. When you say being washed do you mean the entire train or just the windows?

Posted from iPhone



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/07/22 12:06 by alan2955.



Date: 05/07/22 11:56
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: Train29

I was also in Miami and saw the Star come in from NY. One Amfleet coach was sparkling clean and shiny. The rest looked filthy. But the windows looked relative clean. So maybe only the windows are being washed? 



Date: 05/07/22 13:54
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: OldPorter

It's an interesting topic- thanks. Many older timers here will remember the ABQ window washing of the Southwest Chief. A "carry over" from the ATSF days and its glorious Trains. My own recollection of this process was a rickety kind of machine, mounted on an LPG powered forklift, with a rotating brush and water supply. It worked pretty well, when it was deployed, which was not every trip. The passengers appreciated it- getting clean windows; esp. for the scenic EB ride up through Glorieta and Raton Passes. Just a relic of the past now.  Oh one other side story- at TA's, we sometimes ended up watering our own cars (here and there) to help out the Car workers at larger terminals. We would take a few minutes and use the White colored (potable) H20 nozzles to rinse off every window we could reach, on that side of the Car. At least it flushed off some of the road dust, improving the view a bit. Maybe our friend the Boiling Man remembers this little memory. I'll bet he did it too. ?

I also recall passengers themselves rinsing their own windows, (on the lower level, of course.) They would come out with a wet towel, and do their best to wipe down a dusty window.  I know that sounds crazy, but I saw it happen more than once along the way, on different Long Haul trains.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/07/22 14:01 by OldPorter.



Date: 05/07/22 15:40
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: ccn511

I have cleaned my own lower level window more than once. The window cleaning at ABQ is now done with a bucket, a long-handled sponge/brush and long-handled  squeegee.



Date: 05/07/22 15:58
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: dan

. Many older
> timers here will remember the ABQ window washing
> of the Southwest Chief. A "carry over" from the
> ATSF days and its glorious Trains. My own
> recollection of this process was a rickety kind of
> machine, mounted on an LPG powered forklift, with
> a rotating brush and water supply. It worked
> pretty well, when it was deployed, which was not
> every trip. 

amtrak had a machine in denver till the superliners, they also had a wash rack that lasted until 77 or so, the denver cars that were switched out got a bath, and the power



Date: 05/07/22 16:35
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: fulham

Does anyone know what Amtrak's policy is regarding the running of equipment through car washers (assuming they are operating)...

Obviously there is some sort of standards that all trains go through between arrival and departure...

For example:

Restocking the cafe/dining cars
Changing bedding and cleaning interior of sleepers
Cleaning coach cars (this may only include vacuming the floor)
Watering the entire train
Cleaning the restrooms
Restocking the restrooms
Refueling the engines (outside the NEC)
Washing engine windows

There may be more but you get the point.

Is pulling the train through the washer part of this "list" or is it optional?

And if the above is not done are their repercussions or does the rank and file just shrug and say "whatever" and the supervisor explains it away to superiors.

Call me cynical but I would like to say it is the former but I believe it is the latter.  



Date: 05/07/22 17:31
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: engineerinvirginia

I don't think Auto Train cars get much washing unless it's done with a bucket and brushes....I'm not sure they can let the cars go off route long enough to run through a wash rack. 



Date: 05/07/22 18:02
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: bandob

"a rickety kind of machine, mounted on an LPG powered forklift, with a rotating brush and water supply. It worked pretty well, when it was deployed, which was not every trip."

Picture worth 1,000 words dept.

B&OBill




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/07/22 18:03 by bandob.




Date: 05/07/22 18:34
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: bobs

Both Denver and Albuquerque stops are handled by contracted companies.  Washing the windows is probably part of the contract.  At both, the cars are watered, windows washed, trash picked up, and a 1,000 mile inspection is done, which mostly entails looking for obvious problems like dragging chains or hoses, bad cables etc., checking brake shoes and tapping on the wheels, which make a distinct sound kind of like a bell if they are OK.

In Seattle, New Orleans, Los Angeles, Oakland, and Chicago, if the wash racks are operational, the train is usually pulled through when it is removed from the station and taken to the yard.  Possibly in other termination points too, but those are the ones I know.



Date: 05/07/22 20:49
Re: Window cleanliness?
Author: railfan400

A Keystone Service train I rode a week ago had a pretty clean exterior while the one I rode a day ago was quite filthy outside. During the stop in Philadelphia I wiped off my window. Both trains were spotless inside.



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