Opponents try to derail $850M South Station expansion plan

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

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Re: Opponents try to derail $850M South Station expansion pl

Postby boblothrope » Thu Apr 11, 2013 1:26 pm

sery2831 wrote:As of the beginning of this year, Conductors are now required to be Certified like locomotive engineers. Every train needs to have to have a minimum of two certificates(one engineer and one conductor) to operate.


Is that requirement a federal law?

sery2831 wrote:Adding and cutting cars requires a full mechanical staff to break the cars and do the paperwork. Conductors do not break apart coaches unless there is an emergency. A electrician is required to do all the cables in between. You will also need a carman, and a machinist... And they work under the authority of a mechanical foreman.


Fully automatic coupling would be a great feature for new equipment.

Back when there was a U.S. railcar manufacturing industry, they were trying to develop this. Here's a page from a Budd brochure promoting the SPV: http://www.flickr.com/photos/etmccaus/6 ... 472081433/
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Re: Opponents try to derail $850M South Station expansion pl

Postby octr202 » Thu Apr 11, 2013 1:50 pm

Just because RDC's and SPV's had knuckle couplers, I doubt there is any reason that new FRA compliant DMUs couldn't have MU couplers, eliminating all the cables and hoses. And HEP doesn't need to be trainlined when each car generates it's own.

Wonder if MU's (cordless or wired) need the same amount of paperwork when dropping/adding cars?
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Re: Opponents try to derail $850M South Station expansion pl

Postby CRail » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:49 pm

sery2831 wrote:Right now, the MBTA requires 4 cars for braking reasons. The trainsets are 5,6, and 7 cars with the exception of the two 8 car sets that do not see off peak service.
Adding and cutting cars requires a full mechanical staff to break the cars and do the paperwork. Conductors do not break apart coaches unless there is an emergency. A electrician is required to do all the cables in between. You will also need a carman, and a machinist... And they work under the authority of a mechanical foreman. It's a lot more work than just operating the sets as is. Plus exactly when do you propose to do these cuts? These take time and most train sets keep operating on tight turns with the exception of the trains that put up in outlaying points.

The 4 car rule is stupid (IMHO), and I don't understand the motive behind it. A three car train isn't a "light move". Especially since all of the K cars have disk brakes on top of tread brakes, why can't they be excepted? It doesn't make sense to me.

All of the crafts mentioned are on hand at every outside point overnight, and in town during the day. Certain outside points could be staffed with such mechanical crews during the off peak to break and make sets as they come in. Having such a crew on hand should expedite the process a bit. To justify their hours between rushes, have the electrician and carman perform general maintenance on the cut cars (such as lights, brake shoes, etc). I don't know why you'd need a machinist, their work is primarily on locomotives, at least that's how I understood it. To quote a late esteemed transit professional and guru, and close friend of ours; "With every solution comes a new set of problems," but that doesn't mean it can't be done.
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Re: Opponents try to derail $850M South Station expansion pl

Postby MarkB » Sat Apr 13, 2013 5:43 pm

This stuff makes me want to kick a puppy. The North-South link loons are the kind of people who tear down the house if they don't get their own way. Because they know better than you. Sorry - you got your beloved Big Dig and all those union construction jobs. Now there's no more money. You spent it all.
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Re: Opponents try to derail $850M South Station expansion pl

Postby sery2831 » Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:53 am

boblothrope wrote:
sery2831 wrote:As of the beginning of this year, Conductors are now required to be Certified like locomotive engineers. Every train needs to have to have a minimum of two certificates(one engineer and one conductor) to operate.


Is that requirement a federal law?


Yes.
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Re: Opponents try to derail $850M South Station expansion pl

Postby 3rdrail » Sun Apr 14, 2013 12:11 pm

North Station won't benefit ? Who cares ! Railroad execs have placed North Station in tag along status with it's minor Downeaster and commuter service. It's not exactly a throbbing artery of railroad industry like it was in "Iron Horse" days. I haven't seen much in the way of how it would expand service if they got mucho dinero either ! Let the money go primarily to South Station where cites like NYC, Philly, and DC are served along with a whole bunch of commuter lines.
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