CoNO: All things City of New Orleans

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City of New Orleans Train Consist

Postby jp1822 » Sat May 29, 2004 10:55 pm

Does anyone know what the train consist is for the City of New Orleans for the summer - specifically - is it running with one sleeper and the transition car for revenue service? Saw the City of New Orleans in New Orleans this evening, 5/29/2004, and it had (from back to front) a Superliner II Sleeper (Arizona) on the rear with about three coaches, then the Sightseer Lounge, Diner and ??? Missed the front part of the train. Will try to take note tomorrow. Seemed odd that the sleeper was on the rear coupled next to the coaches and not adjacent to the Diner and Sightseer Lounge. Could they be operating an extra sleeper over Memorial Day?

Is the Texas Eagle trainsets still used for the City of New Orleans these days?
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Re: City of New Orleans Train Consist

Postby RMadisonWI » Sat May 29, 2004 11:57 pm

jp1822 wrote:Does anyone know what the train consist is for the City of New Orleans for the summer - specifically - is it running with one sleeper and the transition car for revenue service? Saw the City of New Orleans in New Orleans this evening, 5/29/2004, and it had (from back to front) a Superliner II Sleeper (Arizona) on the rear with about three coaches, then the Sightseer Lounge, Diner and ??? Missed the front part of the train. Will try to take note tomorrow. Seemed odd that the sleeper was on the rear coupled next to the coaches and not adjacent to the Diner and Sightseer Lounge. Could they be operating an extra sleeper over Memorial Day?

Is the Texas Eagle trainsets still used for the City of New Orleans these days?


To answer the second question first, yes, the City and Eagle share trainsets...assuming they make the connection. When I took the Eagle earlier this month, we arrived 6 hours late, and the City of New Orleans used the Empire Builder's equipment instead.

They put the sleeper at the back because that way they don't have to do any switching in Chicago. The Texas Eagle runs with the sleeper at the rear because three times per week, the last two cars are sent on the Sunset Limited to LA. They put it at the rear the other four days of the week just to keep things consistent.

They are still selling revenue space in the transition sleeper, a practice that will expand to more trains this summer (if it hasn't already started), including the Capitol Limited and California Zephyr, plus possibly one more that I can't think of off the top of my head.

I recall reading something a year ago when they first started doing this that the current consist was pretty much the limit that they could get away with using a single locomotive. I don't think they are adding any extra sleepers for the summer on that train. In fact, I heard that they couldn't even add the third sleeper onto the Southwest Chief due to lack of available cars, though maybe its introduction was just delayed. If anyone has spotted the Chief lately, perhaps they can report on whether or not the third sleeper has made it onto the train yet.
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Consist

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Sun May 30, 2004 8:59 am

Consist for #58 (25 Feb Ash Wednesday)

P-42
Baggage
T-Dorm
Diner
Lounge
3 Coaches
Sleeper

Also the same consist appeared to be that of #58(6 Apr; terminated Flora MS)

Sleeper on the rear is just fine with me. Unfortunately , last August on #59 CHI to MEM, the Sleeper was "on the head". Thank you very much, Amtrak, for sharing with me the location of every X-ing en route.

Fortunately, "on the rear' last Feb, the only "en route awakening" was X-ing Old Man River at Cairo, but then I even woke up for that on the Panama Ltd, circa 1965 (lest we forget or in this case lest we find out; "twentysomethings" DO sleep better in this life than "sixtysomethings")
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Postby mattfels » Sun May 30, 2004 12:30 pm

I don't understand the sarcastic "thank you very much" with regard to the crossings. The point is not that Amtrak's horn disturbed the slumber of a "First Class" passenger; whoever's in the car at the head will hear those sounds. The point is that there are too many grade crossings.

Who can solve this problem? How about the Federal Railroad Administration, which already runs a Highway-Rail Crossing Safety and Trespass Prevention Program? Only problem is, it doesn't go far enough. FRA uses a "3 E's" approach to improving grade-crossing safety
  • education
  • enforcement
  • engineering
What's missing from the list? Elimination I want an FRA that will apply a "4 E's" philosophy, not 3. Writing the new administrator, when appointed, can only help.
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Postby David Benton » Mon May 31, 2004 3:07 am

Back to the consist , does having the sleeper at the opposite end to the dorm , mean that the dorm has its own sleeper attendant for the 1/2 car sleeping facilities ?
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Postby RMadisonWI » Mon May 31, 2004 10:36 pm

David Benton wrote:Back to the consist , does having the sleeper at the opposite end to the dorm , mean that the dorm has its own sleeper attendant for the 1/2 car sleeping facilities ?


Yes...sorta. The transition sleeper does have its own attendant, though I doubt it's due to the location.
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City of New Orleans Trip

Postby jp1822 » Mon May 31, 2004 11:18 pm

Today's City of New Orleans Train Consist -

2 Genesis Engines (I think)
Transition Sleeper/Dorm
Diner
Sightseer Lounge
Coach
Coach
Coach
Superliner II Sleeper - Arizona

We were nearly three hours late getting into Chicago due to inclement weather (thunderstorms, rain, tornado warnings) before and after Memphis. Prior to the storm - we were pretty much on time.

To my surprise, there were a lot of people departing in Memphis that reserved a standard sleeper from New Orleans to Memphis. Perhaps they received a call to upgrade for the day? Sleepers were nearly full (only a couple of deluxe bedrooms were empty) from New Orleans to Memphis. Then when I wokeup in the a.m., my sleeper (the rear sleeper) was nearly empty, and only two or three passengers left in the Transition sleeper. Seems that the City of New Orleans has a lot of intermediate traffic - or at least on this trip.

They did sell sell revenue space in the Transition Sleeper with the first coach attendant taking care of things there. As mentioned, I was in the rear sleeper (a nice Superliner II to my surprise) but did check out the Transition Sleeper. Curtain separates crew from passengers. They should be utilizing revenue space in this car. Seems to work fine. Missing out on revenue opportunity by not doing so. Crew still has there own space in the car.

Daylight scenery on the City of New Orleans from New Orleans to the time it got dark after Yazoo was neat. Not as superior as other Amtrak routes, but enjoyable. Had a nice rear-end view from the sleeper - no freight cars on the rear!
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Postby mattfels » Tue Jun 01, 2004 9:45 am

they should be utilizing revenue space in this car. Seems to work fine.

Guess what? By the correspondent's own testimony, "they" are. So when we run the following comment through the railfan filter to remove the knee-jerk negativity. . .
Missing out on revenue opportunity by not doing so.[/quodoing so.
to read thus:
Good to see them taking advantage of a revenue opportunity by doing
so.

We do think this is a good thing, yes?
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Postby mattfels » Tue Jun 01, 2004 9:47 am

they should be utilizing revenue space in this car. Seems to work fine.

Then here's some good news. By the correspondent's own testimony, "they" are. So when we run the following comment through the railfan filter to remove the knee-jerk negativity. . .
Missing out on revenue opportunity by not doing so.
it comes out as:
Good to see them taking advantage of a revenue opportunity by doing so.

We do think this is a good thing, yes?
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Expand

Postby jp1822 » Thu Jun 03, 2004 10:41 pm

Appreciate the re-wording for a positive perspective, Mr. Fels. To further my point, they should be utilizing the transition sleeper/dorm space on as many trains as possible. The whole concept of utilizing revenue space in the transition car was in the "trial phase" for the Texas Eagle and City of New Orleans. Hasn't this been in the trial phase for a year now - and no problems seemed to surface that I have heard of. Thus, expand, as the transition sleeper/dorms were designed for such revenue space.

There was talk of expanding revenue space in the transition sleeper for the Southwest Chief, Capitol Limited and CA Zephyr for the summer. But I don't have confirmation of this - other than reading about this on another site. Since the third sleeper is not going to be added to some long distance trains over the summer (i.e. CA Zephyr) would be a nice compromise to use the Transition sleeper space.

By the way there were two coach attendants on my City of New Orleans trip. The one coach attendant was in charge of the patrons in the Transition sleeper/dorm. Not sure if this is the standard or not.
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City of New Orleans to the rescue

Postby updrumcorpsguy » Wed Sep 15, 2004 6:39 pm

This is from a press release on the Amtrak website:

"As the weather system approaches New Orleans, which is below sea level, local officials agreed to a delay in erecting the last gate in the levee system in order to allow an expanded City of New Orleans train to depart northbound this afternoon. An additional set of rail cars ordinarily used by the Crescent was added to the City of New Orleans to create a 21-car train in order for nearly 700 passengers to leave the city, with most bound for Memphis."

It sounds pretty scary down there. I called a friend who works at the New Orleans Fairmont, and they are hunkered down fearing the worst.
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Postby queenlnr8 » Wed Sep 15, 2004 7:21 pm

TWENTY-ONE CARS! I don't think that we have seen a train of that length since pre A-Day.

Can anyone confirm?
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Postby Ken W2KB » Wed Sep 15, 2004 7:50 pm

That's only an average of 35 passengers per car. Maybe 40 if you allow for the diners. Probalby wanted to get the equipment out of harms way.
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Postby AmtrakFan » Wed Sep 15, 2004 9:36 pm

Are these Evacueees? Also when will the CNO run between CHI-MEM or Jackson for now?

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Re: City of New Orleans to the rescue

Postby railfanofewu » Wed Sep 15, 2004 11:08 pm

updrumcorpsguy wrote:This is from a press release on the Amtrak website:

"As the weather system approaches New Orleans, which is below sea level, local officials agreed to a delay in erecting the last gate in the levee system in order to allow an expanded City of New Orleans train to depart northbound this afternoon. An additional set of rail cars ordinarily used by the Crescent was added to the City of New Orleans to create a 21-car train in order for nearly 700 passengers to leave the city, with most bound for Memphis."

It sounds pretty scary down there. I called a friend who works at the New Orleans Fairmont, and they are hunkered down fearing the worst.

Nice to see Amtrak running a long train to get people out of harm's way, and their equipment. Some of the equipment is OLD, and that is just the cars they bought in the 1970s. Should not have them sitting around in a hurricane.
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