• MOM Rail Service

  • Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.
Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.

Moderators: lensovet, Kaback9, nick11a

  • 1606 posts
  • 1
  • 104
  • 105
  • 106
  • 107
  • 108
  by CJPat
Bracdude181 wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 12:20 pm @CJPat Strange, from what I can tell the complete opposite is going on.

As far as I know NJT wants absolutely no freight whatsoever. Obviously Amtrak doesn’t want a whole heap of long, slow, heavy freight trains on their tracks, but they understand that there will be situations where freight trains must share tracks with passenger trains. So they try to accommodate where possible. They seem okay with trains like ME-2 and OI-32 provided that there isn’t too many of them. It helps when you have four separate tracks at your disposal. It gives faster traffic a passing lane.
@Bracdude, every rail line has to deal with some kind of freight. It is the core of the rail industry. NEC deals with ME-2, OI-32 and others, but remember, Amtrak is trying to run a 125 mph railroad. It is more dangerous with the freights sharing the NEC than NJT sharing their 80 mph railroad with freight. Plus Amtrak owns the NEC and allows NJT access giving them the leverage over NJT not to allow more freight, unless they want to be agreeable.

I understand that you identify NJT and the Coastline as being non-freight friendly via comments from your connected source. But all rail owners that prioritize Passenger over freight will always want the freight to either not run on their line outright or be regulated to off hour zones. And obviously it is relatively opposite for the rail companies that prioritize freight.

I think (don't know for a fact) that NJT has legal obligations to accommodate freight enforced by the ICC/FRA agreements. They may play games with authorizations to make it more inconvenient, but a serious legal challenge would probably change that. The State being the State likes to push it's muscle around over any privatized operation so no one wants to outright challenge them for fear of reprisals. Unfortunately, the Feds play the same game and are stronger at it. NJT wants certain abilities over Amtrak rails which means they must accept what Amtrak does not want. Big games played at pay levels much higher than anything i will ever make.

So if NEC doesn't want to accommodate something from Monmouth Junction, they can make NJT take it up to Rahway for shorter exposure on the NEC. So from my perspective, Amtrak is directing the big picture over who takes what and on what line.

Hey, maybe my perspective is all wrong.
  by Bracdude181
@CJPat All things considered your perspective probably isn’t too far off.

Yes, NJT cannot ban freight outright and they know this despite how much it pains them. I don’t just get that from one source though. Both people from Conrail and NJT tell me about some of the things that go on, although interestingly I’ve gotten more on that from the Conrail crews...

NJT seems to get around this (where possible) by concentrating all freight movements around certain areas, having the freight use as little of their tracks as possible. The best examples of this that I know of would be how CA-20 and OI-16 use NJT tracks to go where they need to.

If NJT had it their way I think all the freight on their network would’ve been gone day one if not within weeks/months.

It’s funny you mentioned how freight railroads often prioritize their own trains over the passenger trains they share their tracks with. Isn’t there a law somewhere that says passenger trains must always have priority? Obviously I can’t get mad at NJT and Amtrak for giving priority to the passenger trains. If I got stuck behind SA31 during rush hour I’d be angry too lol.

One more thing, you mentioned NJT wanting some more leverage over the NEC than what Amtrak allows. I’ve had a funny feeling that’s something both have argued about in the past, and it may be the reason why OI-32 runs at night. All I know for sure is that Amtrak has been getting on NJTs @** for their PTC issues that have been happening a lot now.

NJT rushed the installation and implementation of PTC on their network and they have paid a very heavy price for it. Not a day goes by now without at least one train suffering from some sort of PTC failure. Some trains break down badly enough that the PTC will completely prevent the train from moving. On the Coast Line it seems that happens once a week. Apparently it’s so bad that I’ve heard Amtrak is thinking about kicking them off the NEC completely if they can’t get the PTC problems sorted.

I have no idea if they will attempt such a thing, although part of me wants to see it happen just for morbid curiosity. Two government organizations, one that tries to actually be good and another that exists solely to pocket money pitted against each other.

I don’t think I need to say who’s side I’m on lol.
  by ExCon90
CJPat wrote: Tue Sep 14, 2021 12:10 pm I believe the intent with MOM was to run out all the way to the NEC and then run north. If freight capacity has picked up, then i would expect they would install passing sidings. Penn Central had freights hoping on/off the NEC all the time while serving myriads of customers on either sides of their trackage.
Along the NEC both PRR and PC had an additional track, designated a Running Track or Secondary Track, on one or both sides, and extending from one interlocking to the next, which enabled a local freight to occupy it for as much time as needed to get its work done without affecting through trains, freight or passenger, at all. For a local freight to pull and place cars at a private siding you need to get it off the main -- passing sidings won't do it if there's through traffic to move.
  by ApproachMedium
LMAO oh god the number of times in the last 24 hours the SAND TRAIN was mentioned. Wow well it will be any day now that they will start oh boy!!!

As far as Amtrak and freight running in daylight, amtrak has a restriction on freight between 6 am and 10pm that it cannot exceed 30mph. This doesnt make a big difference for the ME-2, as it still runs during the day but sticks its way in and out of local passenger trains no problem. The long drag that runs between oak island and metuchen doesnt see any tracks over 35mph so the restriction wouldnt do much. Either way, they seem to avoid running the transfer job during the day but the local runs during the day just fine. The same goes for the Morrisville jobs that are out there. The locals all work during the day.
  by Bracdude181
Just while we are on the topic of NEC freight, can someone explain this train and why we never saw it after the tests concluded?

Also, are those restrictions of 30-35 MPH for freight in effect between Philly and Newark? I’ve had some ideas about high speed intermodal freight as of late.
  by west point
Amtrak just keeps the freights above rocking speeds. But Amtrak as well keeps the freight speed down to minimize wear and tear.
  by Bracdude181
@west point I think that’s why freight speeds are so low on much of NJTs network as well. Not sure why rocking would be an issue on the NEC though. Amtrak’s track maintenance is amazing. Far better than NJT or Conrail!
  by west point
Others may know more but some posts seem to maintain car rocking can occur on an class track /?
  by ApproachMedium
The 30mph restriction from 6 a to 10p is for the entire NEC. The only exceptions is for light motor moves. The max freight speed anywhere on the NEC is 50mph. The max speed has nothing to do with the track, its mostly the signaling. the 30mph day restriction is to encourage road freights to run at night when passenger traffic is low.
  by OportRailfan
ApproachMedium wrote: Sat Sep 18, 2021 4:07 am The 30mph restriction from 6 a to 10p is for the entire NEC. The only exceptions is for light motor moves. The max freight speed anywhere on the NEC is 50mph. The max speed has nothing to do with the track, its mostly the signaling. the 30mph day restriction is to encourage road freights to run at night when passenger traffic is low.
Correct. More likely whatever the braking curve is for whatever they deem a "fully loaded freight train."
  by R&DB
#1580508 by Bracdude181
Thu Sep 16, 2021 1:31 pm
Just went back & watched that video. Why did they need 4 locos for that train? Were those trailers loaded with lead?
Last edited by R&DB on Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by Bracdude181
@R&DB Not sure. Would be nice if this train stuck around though.
  by JohnFromJersey
One thing I hear a lot about MOM is how, unless it was a one seat ride to NYC, no one would ride it.

The Coastline is the prize of NJT, yet the Coastline only has a couple trains a day that are directly from Bay Head to Penn Station; the rest of these trains are shuttles from points south of Long Branch to connect them with direct trains to NYC.

Why couldn't NJT do the same thing with MOM?
  by njtmnrrbuff
The Coastline is certainly far from a prize-the majority of the trains that run to Bay Head are local shuttle trains from LB connecting to and from local electric trains from NYP and NWK. The ride is very slow with these trains making every stop on the schedule. In order for MOM to start, first more track capacity must be added underneath the Hudson River. Not only must MOM be a one seat ride-the trains must run express and the route should be as close to direct as possible. If NJT could upgrade the right of way closer to Rt. 9 south of Matawan, that would help. Plus it would be best to add track capacity on the Coastline-triple track down to at least the east limits of the RVL Bridge.
  by Bracdude181
@JohnFromJersey They want to put up catenary wires along whatever route they were gonna take and that’s how they would do their one seat ride.

Seeing how the Coast Line has fared with the electrification between South Amboy and Long Branch, that would not go well AT ALL.

@njtmnrrbuff You know I’ve been wondering why they don’t do express directs on the Coast Line now!! Then if you were going to NY there wouldn’t be much of a reason to drive there. Just drive or bike to the train station and get there faster. Caltrain does it and prior to the pandemic the service was so popular that they couldn’t keep up with demand! No empty seats on trains!
  • 1
  • 104
  • 105
  • 106
  • 107
  • 108