• Increase Worcester service start-up date.

  • Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.
Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

Moderators: CRail, sery2831

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  by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050
 
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:
MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 wrote:
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:There any movement afoot on laying a second mainline track through Beacon Park, or upping speeds to 79 in cab signal territory west of Framingham?
As a matter of fact, I got some info this morning regarding the old Beacon Park yard as well. As always, several rumors floating around. One definite is that the 2nd mainline is indeed going to be reinstalled in the future, no work on it yet tho. I went thru CP 4 this morning, on the South side of the tracks(not Pike side), there is a concrete foundation in place, which to me, looks to be a future cantilever signal bridge for the eastern directional home signal. Regarding Beacon Park, there is talk that MBTA may move their layover of trains from the Big Yard and Front Yard in Southampton St. Yard, Amtrak really wants us out of there. I haven't heard any talk regarding the upgrade in speeds or cab signals East of CP 21 just yet. Update on the dispatching takeover also. Very early August 3rd, they are planning on doing the switchover of dispatching, so expect signal delays thru the weekend for bugs and glitches, and they are hoping to have everything squared away by rush hour Monday morning. I don't know exactly where the layover tracks are going in the P&W, but I'll try to get answers
Is this the engine yard they're considering. Because in the previous southside storage study they were talking about yard tracks next to the mainline (which didn't make a lot of sense if the engine yard was being vacated)?
The way I was told yesterday, it seems that they are referring to the yard itself, but not the whole of Beacon Park, just enough tracks to store the trains during the day and night. As for the rail missing on the track closets to the mainline, that has been like that for some time, don't know where they took the rail to tho
  by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050
 
Komarovsky wrote:IIRC there aren't' any crossovers between 128 and beacon park, so while it's double tracked its not the most flexible double track.
that is correct, things can get messy if something breaks down in the Newton stops

Going West, you have:
COVE (B&A parts ways with the Amtrak Mainline, access from Track 7 - Track 2 to access the WYE if needed)
CP 3 (Grand Jct./East End Beacon Park + universal x'over)
CP 4 (West End Beacon Park, only Lead 3 still in service for lite engine moves to/from the engine house + universal x'over)
CP 11 (Universal x'over)
CP 21 (Framingham Secondary/ North Yard/ Universal x'over)

I've always heard talk of adding another universal crossover between CP 4 and CP 11, but don't know exactly where they would want it, or if it is even still in the plans today.
  by Knucklehead
 
MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 wrote:Some updated information regarding the Worcester line. As of Friday, 7/19, plans to take over the Dispatching by MBCR between COVE and CP 45 will begin August 3rd...AGAIN*** this is the plan, subject to change*** August 3rd, MBCR will assume control of dispatching the Worcester line. MBCR is already in charge of the maintenance and signals on the line. There are still some agreements to be worked out with CSX at CP 45 because there are currently 2-3 layover tracks being constructed in the P&W yard for the anticipated increase in Worcester service for the fall. Also, MBCR is in discussion with CSX regarding the heat restrictions that occur on the line, and what the safest method possible is in regards to discarding this rule due to the rail and how it was laid IIRC...didn't quite get the full scope on that part.

Do you know what AAR Frequency the MBCR will be using for this line? WIll the MBCR control CP45 or will that remain with CSXT?
  by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050
 
Knucklehead wrote:
MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 wrote:Some updated information regarding the Worcester line. As of Friday, 7/19, plans to take over the Dispatching by MBCR between COVE and CP 45 will begin August 3rd...AGAIN*** this is the plan, subject to change*** August 3rd, MBCR will assume control of dispatching the Worcester line. MBCR is already in charge of the maintenance and signals on the line. There are still some agreements to be worked out with CSX at CP 45 because there are currently 2-3 layover tracks being constructed in the P&W yard for the anticipated increase in Worcester service for the fall. Also, MBCR is in discussion with CSX regarding the heat restrictions that occur on the line, and what the safest method possible is in regards to discarding this rule due to the rail and how it was laid IIRC...didn't quite get the full scope on that part.

Do you know what AAR Frequency the MBCR will be using for this line? WIll the MBCR control CP45 or will that remain with CSXT?
In our radios, the new FR/WO road frequency will be 020 and from the sounds of it, MBCR will NOT have control of CP 45. Their territory will be COVE (exclusive)- CP 45 (exclusive). Still haven't heard an update on negotiations regarding CP45 and whether our trains will need to carry CSX paperwork in order to navigate CP 45 to access the P&W.
  by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050
 
diburning wrote:By 020, do you mean AAR channel 20 (160.410)?
Yes, unless we get a radio update before the take over begins ....each channel requires the 0** prefix because of the narrow band conversion that occured at the beginning of the year
  by KB1KVD
 
The "0" prefix is only narrow banded radios. The only update that the radio shop would be putting out is if and when the FCC issues the mandate to go digital. I don't see that coming anytime soon since there are still a lot of companies that haven't narrow banded yet.
  by Komarovsky
 
Possibly related/unrelated to the increased service, lots of new ballast being laid down both east and west of Framingham.
  by The EGE
 
MassDOT is reporting that MBCR is now dispatching the line:
MBCR has direct control (dispatching) of all train and maintenance activities on the 45-mile long line. Dispatchers at South Station can, and will, give priority to Commuter Rail trains over freight trains when necessary.

Commuter Rail dispatchers can now communicate directly with train crews. Prior to this week, MBCR dispatchers would have to relay questions or directions through the CSX dispatchers in Selkirk, New York.

Heat-related speed restrictions will be significantly reduced. The CSX Corporation imposed speed restrictions on all of its railroads if temperatures exceeded ninety degrees anywhere on the East Coast. This corporate rule, which sometimes resulted in unnecessary delays along the Worcester/Framingham Line, no longer applies. In addition, stepped-up maintenance work will result in improved track conditions, making rails less susceptible to ‘heat kinks.’
They also say that 20 Worcester round trips and Yawkey completion are both still pegged for the fall.
  by Komarovsky
 
Hopefully they'll be able to improve the express train scheduling and fill in some of the later peak inbound and outbound portions of the schedule.
  by johnpbarlow
 
Q: WRT the T's statement that there will be no more heat related slowdowns when temps exceed 90 degrees, can the T simply make this declaration or is some sort of maintenance activity initially required to ensure that the Worcester/Framingham line CWR was installed/maintained by CSX under conditions that would minimize opportunity for heat kinks?

"...Heat-related speed restrictions will be significantly reduced. The CSX Corporation imposed speed restrictions on all of its railroads if temperatures exceeded ninety degrees anywhere on the East Coast. This corporate rule, which sometimes resulted in unnecessary delays along the Worcester/Framingham Line, no longer applies. In addition, stepped-up maintenance work will result in improved track conditions, making rails less susceptible to ‘heat kinks.’..."
  by sery2831
 
GREAT question! I have been asking the same question as well...
  by Komarovsky
 
There was a comment earlier in this thread or the other Worcester thread that the speed restriction was the result of a CSX freight accident in the early 2000s caused by heat kink and as a result CSX mandated heat restrictions regardless of the condition of the track. I don't remember a source for the info, so it could be wrong.

In other good news for the Worcester line, the Natick station speed restriction seems to have been lifted.
  by dbperry
 
...and nothing in the NTSB report on that accident implicates general hot weather and CWR as a contributing factor to the heat kink. Poor maintenance and inspection are the real culprits. http://www.ntsb.gov/doclib/reports/2004/RAB0405.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The July 4, 2012 derailment of a coal train in Northbrook, IL was caused by a heat kink.
http://www.fra.dot.gov/Elib/Document/3272" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
This accident is interesting because the consist was operating at a reduced speed (heat restriction) when it derailed.

I have always wondered if the heat restriction is worth it or effective...CSX claims it provides more reaction time for the crew to spot an anomaly and stop (?) but 40 mph is still pretty fast - too fast to spot a defect and stop in time, IMO. Supposedly the speed reduction reduces the loading on the rail to prevent heat kinks also.
http://greatergreaterwashington.org/pos ... eavy-rain/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Oh well, sorry to hijack this thread into heat kink / speed restriction debate, but my opinion is that the speed restriction is another knee jerk over-reaction to a minimal risk scenario, not to mention that the heat restriction is (in my mind) of dubious value. Just like everything else in this country, we seem to be bent on trying to reduce risk (or give the appearance / perception of reducing risk) to zero.

[stepping off soapbox]

Dave
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