Amtrak Surge Capacity & Reserve Fleet

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

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east point
Posts: 1272
Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2016 1:50 pm

Re: Amtrak Surge Capacity & Reserve Fleet

Post by east point » Thu Feb 28, 2019 3:16 pm

Let us look at just this winter so far if Amtrak had a surge fleet. We have lost count of the number of trains cancelled or late turn due to trains not arriving at destination in a timely manner. Delays have come in all flavors including freight train derailments, snow, landslides, mud slides, trees, mechanical problems, floods, grade crossing collisions, and more. Except for a rail line closed for whatever reason the surge fleet could easily have dispatched an on time fully mechanically sound train.

Where we would recommend train set surge fleet placements about in order of availability due to past problems.
CHI 2, NYP 1, SEA 1, PDX 1/2, NOL 1, LAX 1, NYP + 1, MIA 1, WASH 1, CHI+1, NOL+1, Would keep spare V-2 diner in CHI, then NOL, then MIA.

mtuandrew
Posts: 6000
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:59 am
Location: the Manassas Gap Independent Line

Re: Amtrak Surge Capacity & Reserve Fleet

Post by mtuandrew » Thu Feb 28, 2019 4:19 pm

In theory Amtrak already has reserves in those places. But in practice, they don’t seem to be used fully?

I’ve been thinking about a surge diner/cafe (as opposed to a reserve V-II or AmCafe) and think that such would need to have extremely limited cooking appliances in order to make food safety a reasonable goal after coming out of storage. Perhaps only a sink, a large icebox cooler, a water cooler with multiple sealed Culligan-style bottles at the ready, possibly a hot plate electric burner, and enough space for a convection oven and coffee maker. Along with a cash box and credit card reader, that would be enough to prep (very) simple food and sell prepackaged items without the large number of surfaces and machines to sanitize in place.

dowlingm
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Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:42 pm
Location: Toronto, ON

Re: Amtrak Surge Capacity & Reserve Fleet

Post by dowlingm » Sun Mar 03, 2019 9:04 am

The heterogeneous nature of the Amtrak fleet makes east point’s suggestion above difficult to implement, at least at some of the indicated bases. There is a big difference between Southwest having a stack of 737s to pick from at a hub if one goes tech with the variation between LDBL, LDSL, and Corridor consists. And even if you have the equipment, without a territory-qualified crew to take the protect consist in a given direction it’s not much use. Suddenly Congress is screaming about Amtrak headcount.

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