Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

Moderators: gprimr1, mtuandrew

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby bdawe » Sun Apr 24, 2016 9:46 pm

So what if the Engineer faints? That problem was solved a very long time ago by deadman switches, and even if the engineer in the train behind him faints too (perhaps some weird gas floating out of the old' Rocky Mountain Arsenal site?), the PTC is going to prevent the trains from colliding.
B. Dawe's map of routes and urban populations https://brendandawe.carto.com/viz/80b9d ... /embed_map NOW updated with 2016 Canadian Populations
User avatar
bdawe
 
Posts: 517
Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2015 1:06 pm
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby BlendedBreak » Sun Apr 24, 2016 11:01 pm

So what? You obviously don't know trains that well.
Ask a certain Metro North Engineer how good that feature works.
Ask a Certain Amtrak Engineer how good that feature works.

So i ask again, what if the [RTD]engineer faints?
User avatar
BlendedBreak
 
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2014 4:50 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby electricron » Sun Apr 24, 2016 11:08 pm

BlendedBreak wrote:So i ask again, what if the [RTD]engineer faints?

The train should stop however long the timer on the deadman switch is set.
How long do you think it would take a conductor in the last car of the train to realize the engineer had fainted, and how long do you think it will take that conductor to reach the cab and apply the brakes? I would like to suggest longer than the deadman switch timer.
electricron
 
Posts: 3903
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 8:35 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby leviramsey » Mon Apr 25, 2016 6:06 am

BlendedBreak wrote:This is a commuter line so the conductor will most likely have to collect fares on board, but since RTD has none...
... This will not apply.


There is no correlation between being a commuter line and having the conductor collect fares. Caltrain doesn't (AFAIK) have conductors collecting fares (from which it doesn't follow that they don't have conductors on board). Indeed, of the systems west of the Mississippi, I believe only Metrolink (with almost certainly the worst safety record among that set of systems, if not the worst safety record in North America) has conductors doing fare collection.

BlendedBreak wrote:
bdawe wrote:So what if the Engineer faints? That problem was solved a very long time ago by deadman switches, and even if the engineer in the train behind him faints too (perhaps some weird gas floating out of the old' Rocky Mountain Arsenal site?), the PTC is going to prevent the trains from colliding.


So what? You obviously don't know trains that well.
Ask a certain Metro North Engineer how good that feature works.
Ask a Certain Amtrak Engineer how good that feature works.

So i ask again, what if the [RTD]engineer faints?


For the Metro North engineer (assuming we're talking about Spuyten Duyvil), he didn't faint, and PTC didn't work because there was no PTC.

For the Amtrak engineer (assuming we're talking about Frankford), there was no PTC either (and the NTSB documents thus far released don't say anything about him fainting).

Also of note: both of those trains had conductors on board. Both conductors failed to prevent the trains from taking curves too fast and crashing (indeed, from skimming the NTSB documents, there's no indication that either conductor had an idea something was wrong).

How long is it going to take for a conductor to notice that the engineer has fainted? They're not checking in on the radio constantly (e.g. every few seconds). The conductor will probably notice after they skip a station (and maybe after they blow by a signal), but by then, there's a decent chance that the train will have already crashed.
leviramsey
 
Posts: 325
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2015 12:12 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby electricron » Mon Apr 25, 2016 1:18 pm

BlendedBreak wrote:As i just explained to the other user that displays a similar level of ignorance; "The Conductor will almost always radio or IC the engineer to ask why they are no longer moving, or if close enough will enter the operating cab. Its that simple. "
These RTD trains are not 3 miles long they are married pairs like SEPTA. Thats about 170 feet from head-end to rear-end. You try to insinuate that conductors are adults with special needs as they wouldn't be able to tell from how the train is moving or not moving that something is wrong.
You two are idiots.

You don't have to attack us personally with insults. Boooooooooo!

And besides stopping the train, what more can a qualified conductor do that a fare enforcement officer or passenger could do? Passengers are equipped with smart phones today, and surely they could call 911 for help. Passengers are capable of providing first aid, possibly even more qualified to do so. Passengers are capable of handling fire extingushers, knocking out windows and opening doors. And I'm sure a fare enforcement officer can be shown how to stop a train.

It's obvious you consider everybody else an idiot, but I trust anyone of us can do a proper job in an emergency if given the opportunity.
electricron
 
Posts: 3903
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 8:35 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby bdawe » Mon Apr 25, 2016 1:58 pm

In the scenarios you've described, the conductor only knows somethings gone amiss after the train's safety systems have brought the train to a halt, and for events like Spuyten Duyvel or Frankford, the PTC system operating on the RTD Line provides a measure of protection against speeding-related accidents that was not then available. What the others were trying to understand is how the conductor's presence aboard the train would contribute to accident-avoidance beyond that already provided by the safety systems. A conductor being available after the fact to help seems nice to have, but it didn't make the difference in whether or not there was an accident if the conductor doesn't know if anything's wrong until after the safety systems have kicked-in.

Beyond that particular realm, it strikes me as difficult to believe that one-man-operation cannot be safely done in Denver when it's done every day around the world at equal or greater levels of safety than found in US passenger railroading.
B. Dawe's map of routes and urban populations https://brendandawe.carto.com/viz/80b9d ... /embed_map NOW updated with 2016 Canadian Populations
User avatar
bdawe
 
Posts: 517
Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2015 1:06 pm
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby leviramsey » Mon Apr 25, 2016 5:01 pm

BlendedBreak wrote:
leviramsey wrote:How long is it going to take for a conductor to notice that the engineer has fainted? They're not checking in on the radio constantly (e.g. every few seconds). The conductor will probably notice after they skip a station (and maybe after they blow by a signal), but by then, there's a decent chance that the train will have already crashed.


As i just explained to the other user that displays a similar level of ignorance; "The Conductor will almost always radio or IC the engineer to ask why they are no longer moving, or if close enough will enter the operating cab. Its that simple. "
These RTD trains are not 3 miles long they are married pairs like SEPTA. Thats about 170 feet from head-end to rear-end. You try to insinuate that conductors are adults with special needs as they wouldn't be able to tell from how the train is moving or not moving that something is wrong.


You brought up Spuyten Duyvil and Frankford Junction. How exactly did conductors stop those crashes?
leviramsey
 
Posts: 325
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2015 12:12 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby Jeff Smith » Mon Apr 25, 2016 6:12 pm

Topic moderated.
Next stop, Willoughby
~Jeff Smith (fka "Sarge") :: RAILROAD.NET Site Administrator
Jeff Smith
Site Admin
 
Posts: 7444
Joined: Tue Nov 07, 2006 9:28 am
Location: MP 67.2 Georgia Southern Railway

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby SemperFidelis » Tue Apr 26, 2016 6:55 pm

I'll try this again:

Has anyone ridden the line?

Comments and verbal insults about the use or non use of conductors are great and all,but I'd like to know what it's like to ride the line and how many people are using it.
SemperFidelis
 
Posts: 1297
Joined: Thu Jun 01, 2006 3:49 pm
Location: Stupid Voterland

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby NH2060 » Wed Apr 27, 2016 8:23 pm

I noticed from watching a news report online that the automated announcements feature the same voice as the one featured on the MBTA Commuter Rail.
NH2060
 
Posts: 1442
Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2010 4:44 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby enterprise11 » Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:12 pm

NH2060 wrote:I noticed from watching a news report online that the automated announcements feature the same voice as the one featured on the MBTA Commuter Rail.


Not surprised given that Alternate Concepts, owned by former T general manager James O'Leary and previous operator of MBTA CR (MBCR), is now one of the principals of Denver Transit Partners.
enterprise11
 
Posts: 50
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 5:33 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby lpetrich » Tue May 10, 2016 6:44 am

Another opening coming up: B Line to Westminster opens July 25 That's a Monday, but there may be pre-opening festivities in the weekend before it.

Construction to start on SE Rail Extension in May The FTA has awarded the project $92 million, with the rest of the project's $233.1 m cost coming from local sources.

From what I've seen of the Denver commuter-rail lines, they seem like they will be separate from freight-rail tracks for most or all of their lengths. I'm sure of this for the Airport Line, and pictures of construction suggest this for the Gold Line. The North Metro Line may be an exception, however, though it may only have branchline traffic.
lpetrich
 
Posts: 1117
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 2:09 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby lpetrich » Sun May 22, 2016 7:51 pm

World Wide Woodard: Lessons from Denver's transit triumph
Denver did a number of remarkable things to make it happen: foster cooperation across a vast metropolitan region, convince a skeptical public to increase taxes to build it, and when budget and expense forecasts collapsed in the face of the 2007-2008 financial collapse, create the nation's first large-scale transit public-private partnership to get much of the system built.

But the biggest lesson learned: the greatest benefit of the system isn't relieving traffic congestion, it's the revolution in land use the stations and lines catalyze. Denver had to discover this along the way, but other cities contemplating major expansions can take advantage of what they learned.

Salvation And Missed Opportunity: Metro Denver Train Expansion | CPR -- has an audio interview with him
The Train That Saved Denver - POLITICO Magazine -- discussing in detail the civic context of the city's rail-transit development.

The story started in 1973, when some Denverites became worried that their city was becoming too much like Houston, sprawling and smoggy. A region-wide solution required region-wide cooperation, and the politicians decided that their municipalities would not be trying to poach businesses from each other. The first line opened in 1994, from downtown southward along Interstate 25. It was much more successful than anyone expected and it was extended to Littleton in 2000. Then FasTracks was passed in 2004, succeeding where a similar measure failed in 1997. It even survived the Great Recession of 2008.

At first, the system's designers thought of it as an alternative to cars. Thus, the E line running in I-25. But they later decided that it was better for encouraging car-optional economic development -- transit-oriented development.

But there are still parts still in planning.
The only segment that wasn’t funded was a 35-mile rail connection to Boulder and Longmont, northwest of the city. “That corridor is still the one we get thumped on the most,” RTD’s Donovan says. “But it’s the most challenging project because it will cost $1.1 to $1.4 billion to build.”

The only big one, that is. There are still some small unfunded segments, like the southwest one, the central one, the end of the North Metro line, and the double-tracking of parts of the Airport Line.

Colin Woodard is a journalist who has written about a lot of things, and this is the first time that I know of that he's written on rail-transit planning.
lpetrich
 
Posts: 1117
Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 2:09 pm

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby Jehochman » Fri Jul 01, 2016 3:17 pm

I had a chance to ride the Denver RTD A line round trip from the airport to Union station. It takes about 45 minutes. There are 6 intermediate stops. It's $9 including unlimited trips for the day. From union station I used the free 16th street mall buses. Was in Denver for two days and never used a car.

The train is well used. Each set has three cars each with nice luggage racks. The platform is just outside the terminal. Go straight towards the hotel, through the arch and you are there. Ticket vending machines at the airport are on the platform. In union station the machines are at the end of the platform not on the platform.

Top speed is 79 mph per my GPS. The line runs along an active runway so you can race airplanes.
Jehochman
 
Posts: 242
Joined: Sun Dec 08, 2013 6:39 pm
Location: Connecticut

Re: Denver Area Light and Heavy Rail (RTD) systems

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Fri Jul 01, 2016 8:11 pm

Mr. Hochman, the last time I was in Denver with a need for public transportation to.the Airport was July '08 in response to a Service "buddy" who was in a "bad way" (since deceased).

I recall the bus rides into town and back to the airport, and even then I thought they were efficient. It sounds as if this RTD line is an improvement over what I saw as quite adequate service.
Gilbert B Norman
 
Posts: 12900
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 6:52 am
Location: Clarendon Hills, IL (BNSF Aurora Sub; MP 18.71)

PreviousNext

Return to General Discussion - Passenger Rail

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest