LIRR Dispatching

Discussion of the past and present operations of the Long Island Rail Road.

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A23unit
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by A23unit » Thu Nov 13, 2008 10:35 pm

how about Win, Garden and Beth...remember when Win burned and the only thing left was the Toilet?

condr
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by condr » Fri Nov 14, 2008 7:05 pm

Did we forget Lead?

DaveBarraza
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by DaveBarraza » Tue Jun 25, 2019 6:55 am

Does Divide have a Train Director?

Head-end View
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by Head-end View » Thu Jun 27, 2019 2:38 pm

Not positive, but I believe Divide is staffed by train directors. As was explained in a much earlier post from the beginning of this thread unlike block operators they are permitted to make train movement decisions without getting authority from the Section Dispatcher at 204. Necessary for bigger towers like Divide that handle a huge area and lots of trains.

freightguy
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by freightguy » Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:51 pm

I think Head-in-view is correct,

Divide mostly had train directors. At least in the 90’s, 2000’s quite a colorful cast of characters. They would be willing to pull pranks on newer employees who called for permission to operate a switch or get paperwork. I think like a lot of things current those days will never return. Quite an education as I hit the 20 year mark this year. Not to take way from those towermen/directors they all knew how railroad.
Signed off

krispy
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by krispy » Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:06 pm

Divide is train directors. One position may do just paperwork/phones/radios, etc. but has to be qualified in all phases in the job. And yes, they had their share of "characters", and to post there was definitely interesting. Part of the job was learning how to sift through the pranks (i.e. moving the "hay train" for the Burro Crane) but you definitely knew the job when they were done with you. But a lot of that came to an end as everything was recorded and then able to recalled at any time from any Boss's office :wink:

Those guys had learned the job in the era before computers and had to work with just a speaker/block line and a block sheet, so they had no choice but to be good, or be gone to another craft. As the job got easier it was a case of "idle hands are the devil's workshop" and mild hazing was a common thing back then.

Even though a director has more latitude than a operator, there's still much we have to do with the section dispatcher and that can involve 2 of the 4 sections. During certain times they may assign a dispatcher to work in the tower, just to relieve the work load of the section in Jamaica. Just ordinary tasks such as switch inspection can quickly ratchet up how busy they get there.

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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by Head-end View » Fri Jun 28, 2019 7:18 pm

I started scanner monitoring of Channel-3 around 1990 and I remember listening to those "old school" operators just before the computer era. Any of you older guys probably remember the booming radio voice saying "Dee-vide! Where all the work is done!" :-D

Train dispatcher
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by Train dispatcher » Sat Jul 13, 2019 1:08 am

Since I don't often check in, I've just seen this post now. The biggest difference between an Opr and Train Director is money. Fast towers like Jay, Hall, Divide, Harold and Queens got paid more money because of more work. It was somewhat inconsistent as Valley was harder to work than Queens but was only an Oprs rate. Divide did have a cast of interesting characters such as Joe the Boss (Grimaldi) and Ted Bartels, either of which I think would have given the comment, where the work is done.
Since I was the exception, after I worked for 28 years for the LIRR 27 of which were in 204, and a few for WDW in Florida, my last job was as a train dispatcher for CSX first in Jacksonville then Huntington WV. There was a subdivision on CSX called the mountain division where there was in 2007 when I started working for them, 2 towers left, Rollsberg and Keyser. CSX dispatchers did not like to work with block oprs but with my LIRR experience, that didn't bother me in the least. What I was amazed by is how little an opr on CSX was allowed to do on his own. Not one of them would move a train unless I gave them explicit permission. This contrasts with the LIRR when the oprs had far more leeway to work their jobs. BTW CSX did eliminate both towers before I retired in 2011.

Publius Plunkett
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by Publius Plunkett » Sat Jul 13, 2019 2:27 pm

What I was amazed by is how little an opr on CSX was allowed to do on his own. Not one of them would move a train unless I gave them explicit permission. This contrasts with the LIRR when the oprs had far more leeway to work their jobs. BTW CSX did eliminate both towers before I retired in 2011.
Is this situation due to the amount of traffic on the LIRR compared to CSX? I'm not implying that it is easy to move mile long freight trains, just that moving hundreds of trains in a small window of time, can require more "on the spot" consideration.

Train dispatcher
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by Train dispatcher » Sat Jul 13, 2019 7:31 pm

Is this situation due to the amount of traffic on the LIRR compared to CSX? I'm not implying that it is easy to move mile long freight trains, just that moving hundreds of trains in a small window of time, can require more "on the spot" consideration.
That does probably have a lot to do with it although I think that the difference in culture contributed as well.

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JamesRR
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Re: LIRR Dispatching

Post by JamesRR » Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:43 pm

The PSCC is jointly operated by Amtrak and the LIRR. They alternate days of operation (not sure of actual schedule). I don't know specific territory but it def. covers from Harold through Penn - not sure if/how far into NJ it covers.

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