Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby Arlington » Thu Jan 19, 2017 5:20 pm

Cowford wrote:Congratulations, George!

Yes, congrats!
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby gokeefe » Fri Jan 20, 2017 11:04 am

Thank you all! Lots of great things to come!
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby highgreen215 » Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:49 pm

Yes - Congratulations, George. (From a rider of the first DE revenue run.)
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby gokeefe » Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:00 am

Thank you! Hopefully the first run was one of many. I noticed Pan Am had survey crews out in force at Wells the other day when I rode through on the Downeaster. The Newmarket crossing still seems to be settling in. There's a very noticeable sideways shimmy just past the crossing.

Also hearing indications that most if not all vacant buildings in Haverhill are now full with new construction now proposed. New mill in Saco right next to the station has sold out the initial offering of about 90 units. There is one vacant building left but for the moment it is literally on the wrong side of the tracks.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby Dick H » Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:08 am

Congratulations to George, And thanks for his continuing military service
as noted in the TRNE announcement here:
http://www.trainridersne.org/
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby MEC407 » Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:38 am

gokeefe wrote:Also hearing indications that most if not all vacant buildings in Haverhill are now full with new construction now proposed.


Wow. That's excellent news if it's true. It was such a ghost town when I visited three years ago. Felt like I was walking around an abandoned movie set.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby MEC407 » Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:40 am

Dick H wrote:Congratulations to George, And thanks for his continuing military service
as noted in the TRNE announcement here:
http://www.trainridersne.org/


Hear, hear. And I just want to state for the record that George is one of the finest people I know, and TRNE is fortunate to have him on board.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby Dick H » Sun Jan 22, 2017 8:15 am

Very busy day yesterday (1/21) for the Downeaster service.
With the women's march in Boston and a 5PM Celtics game
at the Garden (North Station), #690, #692, #694, #695 and
#697 were all sold out. Other than #694 (11 minutes late),
all the other trains were on or very close to schedule.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby Renegade334 » Tue Jan 24, 2017 5:41 pm

Dick H wrote:Very busy day yesterday (1/21)...#690, #692, #694, #695 and
#697 were all sold out.


That is great to hear. I actually get excited to see trains sold out even when I am trying to get down to Boston for a day.

On a separate note: what would it take to get Downeaster to not blow its horn when it is coming into Dover from either the North or south?
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby Dick H » Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:27 pm

Regarding Dover "horns", it would likely require the installation of so-called
"quad gates" with lane islands and gates covering all lanes. Present sight
distance for road traffic at both Dover crossings is quite limited and is likely
to get worse, as the City has sold the Third St Parking lot to a developer
that plans to construct a multi-story business/residential building there.
A similar proposal in 2013 never came to fruition.

In addition, the City Planning Department has proposed converting the
intersection of Third and Chestnut Streets to a "roundabout". I have not
seen the plans, but reportedly, the railroad tracks will go right through
the middle of the circle. I don't see the purpose for this project. The
only time the traffic backs up there to a major degree, is when the gates
are down, and, of course, that will not change with a traffic circle.

The Chestnut/Third Street crossing does need a rebuild job, as it is in
rough shape. 2017 will likely see it rebuilt.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby gokeefe » Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:18 pm

Great information Dick. Much appreciated and good to know especially regarding traffic plans and the sale of the parking lot.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby Trinnau » Wed Jan 25, 2017 8:46 am

Renegade334 wrote:On a separate note: what would it take to get Downeaster to not blow its horn when it is coming into Dover from either the North or south?


The city (yes, the city) needs to apply for to the FRA to establish a quiet zone. Information here. Don't expect Amtrak or Pan Am to be in favor of it, railroads nationwide generally don't like quiet zones because the horn is a safety device and not blowing it reduces the warning. Keep in mind, too, that a train can always blow the horn in an emergency and still is required to in many other situations. All a quiet zone does is stop the required sounding of the horn for grade crossings.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby MEC407 » Fri Jan 27, 2017 8:58 am

This morning in Portland:

Portland Press Herald wrote:A car was struck by a train at a railroad crossing on Brighton Avenue in Portland Friday morning.

Police say the car was crossing the tracks when it was hit. The driver of the car was taken to Maine Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries. Two children, ages 5 and 9, were not injured, police said.

There were no injuries to people on the train, police said. An Amtrak employee said the train was southbound to Boston. The train was removed from the scene by 8:45 a.m.


Read the rest of the article at: http://www.pressherald.com/2017/01/27/t ... -crossing/
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby Ridgefielder » Fri Jan 27, 2017 12:14 pm

What kind of man tries to beat a train across a grade crossing with two children in the back seat?

This was within a whisker of being a horrible tragedy. Here's hoping they throw the book at the guy.
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Re: Amtrak Downeaster Discussion Thread

Postby MEC407 » Fri Jan 27, 2017 12:50 pm

I hope so too. Reckless endangerment of a child, x2.

Update from the PPH:

Portland Press Herald wrote:Portland police say a driver who drove around a line of waiting cars at a train crossing and collided with an Amtrak Downeaster train Friday morning with two children in his car may be charged.

Police say the driver, Derso Mekonen, 56, drove his 2008 Nissan Sentra around the line of waiting cars at a railroad crossing on Brighton Avenue near St. John Street and into the southbound Amtrak Downeaster train 682 at 8 a.m.

The train crossing signals were working at the time, and the gates were down.
. . .
Doherty said video footage from Amtrak and a nearby gas station revealed that Mekonen, who was headed toward downtown Portland on Brighton Avenue, drove around the line of cars and maneuvered around the safety barrier before striking the train as it passed. Both the train and car were in motion at the time of the crash.


http://www.pressherald.com/2017/01/27/t ... -crossing/
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