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  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in Pennsylvania
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in Pennsylvania

Moderator: bwparker1

  by kruffner63
I was back in Indiana, Pa., my hometown, about six months ago... A train southbound pulling maybe 20 or more covered hoppers came through.. I know they ended up at the power plant in Homer City, but I can't figure out what they must be hauling(?)... how often does this move happen, and what else occurs on this line besides the power plant activity? Anything with the junction at Lucerne? Any plans at all for other freight on this line in the future? Thanks.. Ken
  by rnetzlof
The train was no doubt hauling coal to the power plant. As to other traffic on that line, so far as I know, there isn't any. The back story: When that plant (and two others) were built, they received coal by conveyor belt from a mine which underlay much of southern Indiana County. It was estimated that the mine would be able to supply the three plants for 20 to 25 years. By then, it was supposed, nuclear plants would be up and running, and the three mine-mouth plants could be decommissioned.

The "run out in 20 or so years" came true, the "nuclear plants up and running" didn't. So, coal is being brought in from (I think) Greene County to keep the plants running. Conrail set out to build a few miles of new track to supply the plant at Shelocta and Norfolk Southern completed the job. B&P did some construction to improve access to the Homer City plant. The New Florence plant already had good rail service.
  by kruffner63
Thanks.. not sure why they would have used covered hoppers.. then again I don’t know what else besides coal they would be shipping there...
  by BR&P
Three possibilities, all just speculation:

1. Cars may have been hauling some sort of powdered limestone or other material for particulate scrubbers.

2. Cars may have been empty, for loading with fly ash for re-use or disposal

3. Any chance the cars were not going to the plant itself, but were drilling supplies going to be transloaded?
  by kruffner63
The cars did go to the plant itself.. on google maps it shows 30 of these covered hoppers sitting at the base of the plant. .it is at lest nice to see trains back in town after an 11 year hiatus from 1994 to 2005..... I am old enough.. barely.. to remember steam engines on that line... trains running back and forth all day long, it seemed..