Discussion relating to the operations of MTA MetroNorth Railroad including west of Hudson operations and discussion of CtDOT sponsored rail operations such as Shore Line East and the Springfield to New Haven Hartford Line

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, nomis, FL9AC, Jeff Smith

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  by lordsigma12345
 
Most likely the SLE equipment from yesterday at the least. Reportedly there will be some extra unscheduled trains running today as well.
  by Traingeek3629
 
As of 1 PM, Hartford Line ridership has exceeded available capacity. All train service is only to get people back to original destination. Buses being dispatched to Hartford Union Station to relieve crowding. No new customers will be allowed to board at this time.

I'm glad I went to my parents house near Beacon NY rather than ride the Hartford Line today instead of yesterday. I'm going to Southeast instead of Wallingford.
  by lordsigma12345
 
Yikes looks like two CTrail trains were canceled today due to mechanical problems. Amtrak Bailed them out on one and replaced it with a Shuttle. One I think I was canceled outright.

Looks like it’s insanity - glad I went yesterday instead of today. CTDOT should give appropriate kudos to Amtrak and to the bus companies for stepping in to help as much as possible.
  by Backshophoss
 
The MBB's are just plain worn out,the GP40-H's are having "break-in" glitches from the rebuild.
What a way to start off service.overloaded from the get-go!
  by kitn1mcc
 
Saw some pictures. I do not like the fact that the crews do not wear a proper uniform
  by Train60
 
kitn1mcc wrote:Saw some pictures. I do not like the fact that the crews do not wear a proper uniform
All crews that I saw (Amtrak & CTrail) were wearing their designated uniforms. The only open issue, so I heard, seems to be the design of the hat/cap for the CTrail conductors. Interesting to see that the guys operating the CTrail locos were also in uniform. Can't say I've ever seen that in the U.S.

Many of the guys came over from CSX. The ones that I talked to sounded very happy to be working a regular schedule rather than the extra board.
  by lordsigma12345
 
The New Haven - Springfield Amtrak personnel really stepped up to the plate this weekend even though this weekend was about CTrail, this weekend was an example of why both operators are important for this service being sustainable.
  by lordsigma12345
 
lordsigma12345 wrote:Yikes looks like two CTrail trains were canceled today due to mechanical problems. Amtrak Bailed them out on one and replaced it with a Shuttle. One I think I was canceled outright.

Looks like it’s insanity - glad I went yesterday instead of today. CTDOT should give appropriate kudos to Amtrak and to the bus companies for stepping in to help as much as possible.
CTrail 6453, 6456, and 6459 were all canceled today due to the mech problems (All Hartford- New Haven trains). 6453 was replaced by buses and 6456 was replaced with an Amtrak crew running the SLE trainset all the way up to Springfield. The SLE trainset was then run back down to New Haven as an extra train at 5 pm. Didn't hear if any other extra trains were run today.
  by johnpbarlow
 
Here are a few photos from CTrail ops Saturday 6/16/18:
- CTrain train 6400 arrives Springfield as first train out of New Haven
- GP40-2H pushes 6400 into Springfield as crowd readies to board for train 6401 south, the inaugural open to the public CTrail to depart Springfield
- CTrail 6401 at Berlin
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Last edited by johnpbarlow on Mon Jun 18, 2018 6:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
  by Traingeek3629
 
lordsigma12345 wrote:
lordsigma12345 wrote:Yikes looks like two CTrail trains were canceled today due to mechanical problems. Amtrak Bailed them out on one and replaced it with a Shuttle. One I think I was canceled outright.

Looks like it’s insanity - glad I went yesterday instead of today. CTDOT should give appropriate kudos to Amtrak and to the bus companies for stepping in to help as much as possible.
CTrail 6453, 6456, and 6459 were all canceled today due to the mech problems (All Hartford- New Haven trains). 6453 was replaced by buses and 6456 was replaced with an Amtrak crew running the SLE trainset all the way up to Springfield. The SLE trainset was then run back down to New Haven as an extra train at 5 pm. Didn't hear if any other extra trains were run today.
Hartford Line has a 40% On Time performance in revenue service, including Amtrak. 3 out of 3 southbound trains this morning were delayed. Was that due to crowding?

Edit: Make that 4 out of 4. 495 just got delayed 10-15 minutes.
  by lordsigma12345
 
Appeared some trains were getting hung up in the Enfield ct area. Perhaps a slow order in that area. I did notice a slow down in that area when I rode on Saturday. Normally trains pretty much cruise in the area between the CT river bridge all the way up to the big CT river curve at the Longmeadow - Springfield city line.

I gusss it could also be train interference also.
  by lordsigma12345
 
Amtrak 470 now running late as well - but that appears to be due to its connection 170 arriving late in NHV.
  by lordsigma12345
 
Had some free time after work yesterday so for fun I took 417 from Springfield to New Haven, got a Frank Pepe pizza (Very good by the way), and took 412 back to Springfield. There were a few CTrail ticket holders both ways but it was tougher to tell how many on the way back because 412 had quite a lot of NEC connection passengers from a delayed train 94. Seems like the new CTrail tickets are more difficult to scan with the conductor's device than the Amtrak tickets but it appears the procedure is they scan it and then rip a stub off the ticket. I bought from the Amtrak ticket window to get the AGR points since it was a Shuttle both ways (was same price as the CTrail machine even at the last minute.) Was the first time I was on one that got up to the 110 which was neat - on free ride weekend I took CTrail down and Amtrak back but the Amtrak was an SLE set and we only got up to around 90 at one point.
  by Train322
 
My thoughts about the Hartford line.
Equipment:
As many on this board have said, the equipment is terrible and would actually turn people off from using the train (except if it was a regular Amtrak train).
Connecticut claims they are broke but I seem to pay more and more income/sales tax so I don't know where that money is going. Need to cut spending on non-investment expenditures that are giveaways.
The equipment breakdowns are probably responsible for delayed trains.
Need to take legal action against ADA since some people may get sick. The rule that the toilets are closed because not everyone can use them is disgusting. A blind person can't get a drivers license so perhaps everyone else should not be allowed to drive. People would help someone in a wheelchair if needed so they can't use that as an excuse.

Infrastructure:
From Oakwood Ave in W. Hartford south to New Haven, this is excellent and the three new stations are gems. Single track in Hartford and the fact that I84 rebuild will limit progress is a concern. Need to connect in Windsor prior to Sept and get ticket machines into those locations. Could the raised platforms that were used for Devon transfer be a temporary fix in those two locations?
Also, when will the second track from Oakwood Ave to Parkville be open and used?
Idea - if this does not interfere with the I 84 rebuild, add the second track to Sigourney street and build a temp station (raised platforms like was used for Devon with a wood ramp to the Fast track station).
Use the siding at the Hartford Courant as a layup track. (may need to extend) This would cost money but perhaps not too much and while it is a cheap solution, the 28-30 year old coaches are also a cheap solution. Run hourly (30 minutes during peak) to New Haven. Need equipment and who knows where that (physical and $'s) will come from.

Schedule:
Need to have an organized schedule. Every 2 hours at 10 past the hour. Something like Metro North.

Safety:
Aside from high speed on old coaches, Amtrak conductors started to open the door near Berlin while the train was moving and on the track side (not the platform side) because they had no clue where they were. This is disgusting and I am concerned people will get hurt. This was on Saturday when we had the crowds. About 5:30 to 6pm.


Summary:
When I was in New Haven, an old M2 train set was in the yard. The Hartford line cars make the M2's look good.
Probably will take 5-10 years to get things right. Money fixes everything but I have no idea where my tax money is going.
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