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First publish date: 05-21-2006
BNSF Places PRB Third Main Track in Service
About 19 miles of third main track went into service Tuesday, May 16, between Reno and Milepost 58 on the Powder River Basin Joint Line in Wyoming.

Until work on crossovers and signal cutovers is completed in September, trains will operate over the entire 19 miles in one direction at a time.

"This is a great accomplishment for you and your various team members," said Dave Hestermann, assistant vice president and chief engineer, Central, in an e-mail to leaders of the teams involved in the project. "You have accomplished something you should feel very proud of.

"I am very proud of all of you, for the long hours and very professional attitudes that made this phase of the project a huge success," he continued "Please maintain your intense focus during phase two of this very important project and deliver it on time, and accident free!"

The third main track is expected to provide additional capacity for the Joint Line even before the crossovers and signal cutovers are completed and the track becomes fully operational in September. The Joint Line is used by both BNSF and Union Pacific Railroad.

Year-to-date through May 14, BNSF has loaded a total of 101.694 million tons of coal systemwide, up 6.9 percent from the year-to-date total of 95.111 million tons through May 15, 2005.

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