Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

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Matt Johnson
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Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Matt Johnson » Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:15 am

Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Which safety regulations is Amtrak subject to in Canadian territory? Forget about PTC...VIA Rail runs trains at 95 mph on the Windsor - Toronto corridor without even cab signals!

rcthompson04
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by rcthompson04 » Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:29 am

Matt Johnson wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:15 am
Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Which safety regulations is Amtrak subject to in Canadian territory? Forget about PTC...VIA Rail runs trains at 95 mph on the Windsor - Toronto corridor without even cab signals!
What are the rules on the Maple Leaf since it operates with an Amtrak crew in the US and a VIA crew in Canada?

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Matt Johnson
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Matt Johnson » Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:45 am

rcthompson04 wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:29 am
Matt Johnson wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:15 am
Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Which safety regulations is Amtrak subject to in Canadian territory? Forget about PTC...VIA Rail runs trains at 95 mph on the Windsor - Toronto corridor without even cab signals!
What are the rules on the Maple Leaf since it operates with an Amtrak crew in the US and a VIA crew in Canada?
That's a good question. As far as I know, the Adirondack, Maple Leaf, and Cascades trains are running PTC-free on the Canadian portions of their journeys, so I assume they're exempted on that. But none of them operate at greater than 79 mph. Would Amtrak equipment be permitted to run at 95 mph without cab signals in Canada? It would be logical, but the law doesn't always follow logic (see the proposal to put people on dangerous highways in buses to avoid much safer non-PTC railroad on the Southwest Chief route).

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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Tadman » Mon Aug 12, 2019 5:23 pm

The leaf is a Via train in Canada, and thus subject to Canadian regs and CN & Via policy when in Canada. The Cascade and Adirondack are Amtrak trains on trackage rights in Canada, subject to Amtrak & CN policy and Canadian regs.

It would be hard for the FRA to require use of PTC in Canada, but that doesn't mean Amtrak couldn't make a rule that all trains, Canada or not, have to be on PTC. I believe that was one of the grey areas when Anderson threatened to stop running any trains that weren't on PTC by end of 2018.
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by gokeefe » Mon Aug 12, 2019 6:58 pm

Take another look at the slide in the linked article. It's an interline service proposal. The train will be operated by VIA inside Canada.
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by njt/mnrrbuff » Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:40 pm

Similar to the Maple Leaf being operated by VIA Rail once it crosses into Canada, the proposal is to have the Canadian Wolverine operate as VIA Rail once it gets to Windsor. The Maple Leaf does at least 90 in Canada.

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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by gokeefe » Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:55 pm

Agreed. That's my take as well. Which in this case means no Amtrak PTC requirements past the border.
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Arlington » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:18 pm

This has great market potential.
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Backshophoss » Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:21 am

What was done for the "International" when it ran and is done with the "Maple Leaf" now,Crew change at the border(T&E,OBS),
then operated as a VIA Rail train in Canada.
See a problem of getting a slot thru the tunnel,due to HEAVY Automotive freight traffic,and a possible need to upgrade
Emergency Exits and systems for passengers,on Amtrak's and VIA's Dime.
Remember This tunnel is privately owned, EVERYBODY PAYS!!

Don't See Via springing for a new station in Windsor,or a reroute to the current station on industry/abandoned trackage
from the east end of the tunnel :(
The Land of Enchantment is not Flyover country!

NS VIA FAN
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by NS VIA FAN » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:55 am

The Maple Leaf has always used Amtrak equipment but it does become a VIA operated train in Canada with VIA crews and the food items are changed out in the Café…..Coke in Canada and Pepsi in the US!!

The International was different. Both Amtrak and VIA provided the equipment. You could even find VIA LRC locomotives and cars in Chicago. Below is the International at Port Huron in Jan 1983…..an Amtrak F40 with VIA ‘Tempo’ equipment. In later years it was usually Amtrak power with Superliners. On that trip in Jan ’83…..the VIA crew took the train across the border and changed with Amtrak in Port Huron.

Image
Last edited by NS VIA FAN on Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by mtuandrew » Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:23 am

How did they handle the different car power supply systems ie dual HEP feed on VIA equipment?

JimBoylan
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by JimBoylan » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:10 am

mtuandrew wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:23 am
How did they handle the different car power supply systems ie dual HEP feed on VIA equipment?
One way was to use the few Light Rapid Comfortable locomotives that had been tested on Amtrak years earlier, and returned to Via still equipped for U.S.A. Head End Power.
At one time, the Via engineer on the Maple Leaf had to break a seal on some switch that prevented the Amtrak Diesel from exceeding 79 m.p.h. with cab signals cut out.

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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Railjunkie » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:44 am

Let me think... I believe in order to exceed 79mph one would have to cut out the over speed switch. No reason to tinker with the cab signal or other PTC systems as they would not be active. Once back, the over speed would have to be cut back in and sealed.

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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Arlington » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:54 am

Toronto-Windsor currently has 4 trains per day, with running time of about 4h to 4h30
https://www.viarail.ca/sites/all/files/ ... etable.pdf
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Re: Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Post by Ridgefielder » Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:29 am

Would they make a reverse move and/or change ends at Baltimore St., or would this return service to Michigan Central Station?

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