The driving distance between New Orleans and Orlando via Jacksonville is around 687 miles. I believe it is safe to assume the rail distance is further. So lets make it 700 miles as a fair assumption. Most Amtrak long distance trains average speeds between 40 and 45 mph.Backshophoss wrote:For now there's NO reserve fleet,should change a little over time along with the end of leasing commuter equipment on the NEC
1 The Acela I's as the Acela II sets go online
2 Amfleet i's and II's,the "best of" cars kept at Bear and some cars at DC and Boston as protect sets,as the new single level cars
3 Horizon Fleet,for the Gulf Coaster service and intra Florida service along the 2 silver service routes as the new single level cars go online.
4 Superliners released from the midwest and Amtrak Ca Services will help as the the new single level cars go on line in Ca and Midwest services pools
Some math follows:
700 miles / 45 mph = 15.5 hours.
700 miles / 40 mph = 17.5 hours.
The route Amtrak uses the Horizons cars on today are:
Pacific Surfliner, at 350 rail miles and 8.25 hours.
Blue Water at 319 miles and 6.66 hours
San Joaquin at 315 miles and 6 hours (Sacramento to Bakersfield)
Illini and Saluki at 310 miles and 5.5 hours
Wolverine at 304 miles and 6.33 hours
Lincoln Services at 284 miles and 5.5 hours
Missouri River Runner at 283 miles and 5.66 hours
Illinois Zephyr and Carl Sandburg at 258 miles and 4.33 hours
Hoosier State at 196 miles and 5 hours
Hiawatha at 86 miles and 1.5 hours
Amtrak Horizon cars will have to be refurbished before they can with comfort carry passengers for twice as long journeys than they do today for potential Gulf Coast services. The longest trip above has downtown Los Angeles in the middle, where around half the passengers embark or alight. Few passengers ride that train all the way.
Some have suggested using the Horizons on Crescent and Cardinal trains too. Why? The Crescent has 1377 rail miles and 30.25 hours while the Cardinal has 1147 rail miles and 29.25 hours.
350 rail miles is far shorter than 700, 1150, or 1400 rail miles. 8 hours is far shorter than 16, 29, and 30 hours.
Stop advocating using Horizon cars "as is" on any route longer than it is used on today. The last thing most business will want to do is introduce a "brand new" service using completely unacceptable equipment. What a way to make a first lousy impression!