Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, Amtrak67 of America, Tadman, gprimr1

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby Railjunkie » Sat Apr 28, 2018 7:17 am

ACESS is up and running on MNRR Hudson division. There are gaps however between the division post and CP72 along with another gap between CP39 and MP 21.4ish.
Railjunkie
 
Posts: 1096
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 7:24 am

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby Tadman » Sat Apr 28, 2018 12:50 pm

Jeff Smith wrote:So there was news made when Anderson suggested stopping Vermonter service. Um, this one is a bit more major: WPDH.com

AMTRAK MAY SUSPEND SERVICE FROM POUGHKEEPSIE OVER SAFETY CONCERNS
...
In a shocking statement, Amtrak says that they could suspend service between Poughkeepsie and New York City if important safety deadlines aren't met. And it doesn't look like those safety upgrades are anywhere near on schedule.
...
If Metro North is not in compliance by the end of the year Amtrak has announced that they will no longer use the tracks between Poughkeepsie and New York City; basically ending their service in the Hudson Valley. This would be a major blow to commuters, especially those who live north of Poughkeepsie, who's only way to get to Manhattan is by traveling on Amtrak.
...


Sheer genius, I tell you! Lets "protect" passengers by forcing them off the train and onto the road where there are 17x more deaths per passenger mile than on a train. You can't make this s*** up and it sure does stink, but that's never stopped anybody. If you want to hate on Delta Dick, this is the place to do it.

Image
User avatar
Tadman
 
Posts: 9242
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:21 am

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby justalurker66 » Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:52 pm

Once on the road the passengers are no longer Amtrak's responsibility - so actuarialy it makes a lot of sense. Highway deaths are not Amtrak deaths.

I expect that there will be very few railroad segments that the FRA will not allow passenger trains to continue running on at the end of the year. Some will have activated PTC, the rest will have shown significant progress and be able to extend their deadline.

There is a actuarial risk to running without PTC (especially in light of the Cascade wreck where an inattentive engineer destroyed a train and now Amtrak refuses to use that line segment without active PTC). There will probably be some line segment that Amtrak refuses to operate on next year ... but not running trains is not good for their funding.
User avatar
justalurker66
 
Posts: 2297
Joined: Fri May 15, 2009 11:20 pm

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby Tadman » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:49 pm

Yeah, I get it, the deaths on the road aren't Amtrak's fault. At least until they foul a grade crossing and some genius decides that the third rail's 100-yo design is now "dangerous".

But given that the rails are gov't funded and loss-making, they are clearly a part of the gov't's public policy initiatives, which include safety and environmental concerns. If we shove the passengers back to the roads, it fails the basic public policy goals of subsidized trains. They're not here to make money, they're here to present a safer and more efficient alternative to cars.

Further, we have the concept of proximate cause. In the context of the Cascades wreck, proximate cause was not lack of PTC, it was the utter dimwit that though Amtrak was ok to have "training" be a few backwards/at night runs in the trailing cab of a Cascades train.

And speaking of proximate cause, here's one for the law students: if passenger "A" holds a monthly or is a regular rider, and they are forced to drive for a length of time, and they are maimed or killed while motoring when they would usually be on a train, does Amtrak or MN bare any liability for this? If it weren't for the railroads' policies, the maimed motoris in question would be on a safer train.
User avatar
Tadman
 
Posts: 9242
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:21 am

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby justalurker66 » Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:37 pm

Most of those questions are why people do not like injury lawyers ... unless they have hired one on their own behalf.


The third rail design problem killed passengers who were the responsibility of the railroad to which they entrusted their safety. Sure, the design was unsafe for over 100 years without possibly being linked to a single death. Luck does not prove that a design is safe regardless of how long one is lucky.

Did some lawyer go after the Philadelphia police department for failure to prevent people from throwing rocks at trains? If it were not for the rock throwing incident with another train, Amtrak engineer Brandon Bostian would not have been distracted by the incident and radio traffic. Proximate cause can be taken too far. After all, if Amtrak would not have scheduled a train through Philadelphia the derailment could have been avoided. Apparently there was a history of rock throwing (High Urban Threat Area?) and Amtrak continued to take the risk.

Anyone can take an argument to the insane extreme. Perhaps claims should pass the "come on" test? Otherwise we will be finding engineers guilty of causing deaths by marking off leading to a replacement engineer making a fatal run. (If only the regular engineer had not marked off the train would have run with a more experienced person at the controls.)
User avatar
justalurker66
 
Posts: 2297
Joined: Fri May 15, 2009 11:20 pm

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby Tadman » Tue May 01, 2018 10:10 am

justalurker66 wrote: Sure, the design was unsafe for over 100 years without possibly being linked to a single death. Luck does not prove that a design is safe regardless of how long one is lucky.


You can't design a ship to be unsinkable. The third rail was not a luck issue, it was a well-designed piece of equipment in that it took 100 years and millions upon millions off passengers and motorists to see one incident. An incident which was proximately caused by a lady that couldn't figure out how to (a) shift gears; (b) not block the crossing. I'm sure Mercedes-Benz was sued as well by the family, that doesn't mean the gearshift was actually faulty as they claimed.

What you can do is steer clear of the icebergs, which means keeping people off the road if a safer option is available. This is where the governor, congressmen, and senators should step up and put a stop to this foolishness.
User avatar
Tadman
 
Posts: 9242
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:21 am

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby justalurker66 » Tue May 01, 2018 5:23 pm

The problem I see is if one showed that design to a reasonable person (or a jury) would they say that it was safe or would they agree that there was a problem with the design. The defense would be the statistics ... over a hundred years, multiple crossings, one incident? Not bad? But as a reasonable person I can see where such a design would be a problem. (If I remember correctly that system uses a shoe on the bottom of the rail, which makes burring the ends more difficult than the shoe on top of the rail systems.)

Statistically it is cheaper for the railroads to pay damages than to install PTC. The actuaries lost that battle. When Amtrak talks to the actuaries about the risks of running on non-PTC segments mathematically they would get a green light. But if there are any incidents after the PTC deadline on tracks that should have active PTC negligence will not be a hard claim to make.
User avatar
justalurker66
 
Posts: 2297
Joined: Fri May 15, 2009 11:20 pm

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby MCL1981 » Tue May 01, 2018 6:58 pm

I'm a reasonable person. And I find nothing reasonable about this other than "driver was an idiot and caused multiple fatalities due to stupidity"
MCL1981
 
Posts: 686
Joined: Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:23 am

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby David Benton » Wed May 02, 2018 3:00 am

There are modern systems that are safer, the 3rd rail could only be live when the train is passing that section. Done on some light rail lines. But there is alot more cost effective ways to reduce risk , and save more lives than 1 in 100 years . PTC been an obvious one.
Moderator worldwide railfan , Rail travel & trip reports
The only train trips I regret are the ones I didn't take.
User avatar
David Benton
 
Posts: 8397
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 11:29 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Wed May 02, 2018 9:40 am

Tadman wrote: If you want to hate on Delta Dick, this is the place to do it.


Mr. Dunville, you just may have christened Mr. Anderson with a lasting moniker. :P

Now if Matt Fels were still around these parts.....
Gilbert B Norman
 
Posts: 13806
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 6:52 am
Location: Clarendon Hills, IL (BNSF Chicago Sub; MP 18.71)

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby Tadman » Wed May 02, 2018 10:23 am

You know, I don't hate the guy. I've been disappointed lately because he hasn't focused on consistency of offering and service procedures. I think he has a real opportunity to change things. I'm market-neutral on the policy change for PV's and charter trains. I'm very interested in the move to medium corridors. I think he did great work at Delta, it's easily the best domestic carrier out there.
User avatar
Tadman
 
Posts: 9242
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:21 am

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby ryanov » Thu May 03, 2018 1:05 am

Delta has made made customer-friendly changes. I’ve not seen any at Amtrak, apart from upcoming reserved seating.
|=| R. Novosielski |=|
User avatar
ryanov
 
Posts: 4868
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 2:19 am
Location: Newark, NJ

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby robmcalpine » Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:48 pm

Interesting segment on 60 Minutes this past Sunday discussing this topic. Seems like a no-brainer to me to get this PTC working system wide ASAP. I bet the segment scared a few people away from Amtrak.
robmcalpine
 
Posts: 46
Joined: Fri Apr 16, 2004 2:53 pm
Location: Windham, NH

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby 8th Notch » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:48 pm

robmcalpine wrote:Interesting segment on 60 Minutes this past Sunday discussing this topic. Seems like a no-brainer to me to get this PTC working system wide ASAP. I bet the segment scared a few people away from Amtrak.


Unfortunately easier said than done, it’s not cheap and it requires a lot of time to install on both the tracks and equipment. I’m not going to comment much on that 60 minute segment however some things were blown out of proportion quite a bit. I can’t help but wonder what the csx engr who lost his job was thinking by making some of those comments during interview (while fighting for his job back)....
8th Notch
 
Posts: 617
Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2014 1:23 pm

Re: Amtrak: PTC Mandate, Progress System Wide

Postby bulk88 » Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:49 pm

8th Notch wrote:Unfortunately easier said than done, it’s not cheap and it requires a lot of time to install on both the tracks and equipment. I’m not going to comment much on that 60 minute segment however some things were blown out of proportion quite a bit. I can’t help but wonder what the csx engr who lost his job was thinking by making some of those comments during interview (while fighting for his job back)....

A settlement or favorable future job recommendation from CSX are far more likely than him in the seat at CSX again. Gotta make CSX sweat a little to want to agree on an NDA and check with you.
bulk88
 
Posts: 34
Joined: Sun Jun 28, 2015 4:31 pm

Previous

Return to Amtrak

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bob Roberts, David Benton, Exabot [Bot] and 5 guests