• All things Harrisburg (Keystone) Line

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

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

  by rcthompson04
 
Roadgeek Adam wrote: Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:37 am
rcthompson04 wrote: Tue Apr 26, 2022 6:59 am I have wondered why there isn't an infill station between Parkesburg and Lancaster. Looking at the map there really isn't a good spot anywhere. The straight stretches are in empty territory and any settlement of significance is somewhere on a weird track angle or turn.
Is there really demand for a stop in Leaman Place? Strasburg Railroad is nice, but it feels like there would not be a demand.

Personally my preference is something like Duncannon or Newport to break up the Harrisburg/Lewistown gap, providing a park and ride stop that travelers on US 11/15 can use rather than having to drive down to Harrisburg to catch the train.
I think somewhere in the Lancaster suburbs east of the city make the most sense for an additional stop.
  by STrRedWolf
 
Roadgeek Adam wrote: Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:37 am Is there really demand for a stop in Leaman Place? Strasburg Railroad is nice, but it feels like there would not be a demand.
Given what I've seen of Amish activity not only around the Strasburg's main station and also on the Pennsylvanian around the July 4th holiday (yes, the Amish go to conventions)... I can see a transfer station at Leaman Place and connecting service.

Heheh... and it would be fitting, TBH.
  by scratchyX1
 
STrRedWolf wrote: Tue Apr 26, 2022 10:56 am
Roadgeek Adam wrote: Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:37 am Is there really demand for a stop in Leaman Place? Strasburg Railroad is nice, but it feels like there would not be a demand.
Given what I've seen of Amish activity not only around the Strasburg's main station and also on the Pennsylvanian around the July 4th holiday (yes, the Amish go to conventions)... I can see a transfer station at Leaman Place and connecting service.

Heheh... and it would be fitting, TBH.
I think there is Bus service on rt 30, from lancaster, If it was semi frequent, I could see families getting off at leaman place for strasburg (and rrmpa) and over night at red caboose.
Or, do both strasburg, and Dutch Wonderland, as a day trip.
  by Roadgeek Adam
 
I feel like we wend up in a situation where you'd need a Colonel Allensworth station equivalent where the station is only available for holidays and stuff. I can't see demand for a full-time stop all season. I know the Amish love Amtrak, and have seen many of them, but I feel like it adds dwell time quite a bit.
  by rcthompson04
 
Keystone 651 struck a trespasser east of Ardmore on the evening of June 3.
  by rcthompson04
 
The Keystone Service numbers in the last Amtrak Monthly Performance report (June 2022) aren't very hot: https://www.amtrak.com/content/dam/proj ... e-2022.pdf

The service is running an operating deficit of $34.7 million for FY 2022 with a load factor of 21%. This compares to a $16.8 million deficit and load factor of 13% for FY 2021, $11 million deficit and load factor of 31% for FY 2020, $4.2 million and a load factor of 40% for FY 2019.

On a month to month basis, it appears to be losing approximately $4 million a month since the start of the calendar year with higher losses in recent months. It remains to be seen at what point does the plug get pulled and service is reduced, but there have to be a lot of very empty trains out there to have a 21% load factor. That number has been steady all year.
  by PHLSpecial
 
Since the state is funding both Septa and the Keystone line, maybe PA can model after CT rail and have integrated tickets for both Septa and Amtrak. I think that would help with both frequency and express service. The Keystone line will continue to serve the same stations. With Septa mobile tickets being developed it's fair to sell Septa tickets far as Lancaster. Just thoughts I have.
  by NortheastTrainMan
 
Yesterday Aug 26th I was on Amtrak Keystone 642 to NYP, and the cab car was leading.
All was smooth until we started the approach to North River Tunnels, that's when we dropped to restricting. Most of the time my trains zoom into the tunnel between 40 & 60 MPH.
Then we came to a dead stop and we were informed that a NJT train ahead of us was disabled and we had to reverse (to Bergen interlocking).

Here's a link to a tweet from NJT regarding the incident: https://twitter.com/NJTRANSIT_NEC/statu ... FfT9XJ2VhQ

Anyways, the full move took just under an hour. Of course there were riders that didn't understand that we couldn't magically overtake or go through the NJT train.
Crew members had to verbally tell riders more than once not to walk towards the engineer's cab when we were stopped in the tunnel. People I tell you.

So my question is, how exactly do reverse moves work with the locomotive is in push mode in a tight situation like that?
Is there a video feed that the crew has access to in order to see from the other end?
I'm not sure if a crew member climbed into the ACS-64 cab in that incredibly tight & dark tunnel. Does Amtrak keep a crew member in the locomotive just in case for times like this?

I commended the crew on the reverse move when we got to NYP. First time I ever had a train do that, especially in one of the largest bottlenecks in the country.
  by STrRedWolf
 
They probably just lock down the cab controls, move down the tunnel to the ACS-64, board, throw it into forward, brake test, and then go. Once back out to Bergen, throw it back into reverse, head on back to the cab, unlock it, brake test, go on the signal... assuming one engineer. A qualified conductor/engineer in the engine would of made it faster.
  by STrRedWolf
 
A trespasser strike by Keystone #669 happened around 9pm last night near Middletown station. I don't know if the trespasser lived or not, but the train was cleared to continued after an hour delay. I heard of this one from a fellow rail fan off of a rail Telegram channel who was riding it that day home from a convention.
  by CNJGeep
 
STrRedWolf wrote:They probably just lock down the cab controls, move down the tunnel to the ACS-64, board, throw it into forward, brake test, and then go. Once back out to Bergen, throw it back into reverse, head on back to the cab, unlock it, brake test, go on the signal... assuming one engineer. A qualified conductor/engineer in the engine would of made it faster.
Conductor gets off the train and goes back to the motor. They provide point protection until the move is complete. Then the exit the motor and rejoin the train. No need for a brake test or for the engineer to walk all the way back. This is why conductors are PC qualified as well.
  by NortheastTrainMan
 
@CNJGeep & @STrRedWolf
I figured that would be the process in most circumstances. I just wasn't sure if any of the crew members would be physically able to enter the locomotive cab in such a tight space. Plus there's 3rd rail there. It's a dangerous job for sure, and I'd imagine tight spaces exacerbate it. Hats off to the crew.

**
Also for additional context, the engineer didn't appear to leave the cab car, so it's more likely that a conductor squeezed into the locomotive cab and provided radio access. Once we hit the crossover at Bergen the engineer changed direction and we were on our way. The process itself was pretty quick actually. Getting clearance was the tough / time consuming part.
  by rcthompson04
 
NortheastTrainMan wrote: Sun Aug 28, 2022 9:26 pm @CNJGeep & @STrRedWolf
I figured that would be the process in most circumstances. I just wasn't sure if any of the crew members would be physically able to enter the locomotive cab in such a tight space. Plus there's 3rd rail there. It's a dangerous job for sure, and I'd imagine tight spaces exacerbate it. Hats off to the crew.

**
Also for additional context, the engineer didn't appear to leave the cab car, so it's more likely that a conductor squeezed into the locomotive cab and provided radio access. Once we hit the crossover at Bergen the engineer changed direction and we were on our way. The process itself was pretty quick actually. Getting clearance was the tough / time consuming part.
Yes this is what I saw a few years back when a SEPTA push pull set came upon a stuck switch at Bryn Mawr on track 3 and had to reverse all the way back to Overbrook. In that case the conductor went to the rear car and the engineer remained in the locomotive. The hardest part wasn’t the movement as much as waiting to decide to send us back.
  by Literalman
 
"a load factor of 21%," 31%, and 40%: is the load factor a measure of passenger miles per seat miles? Or maybe the number of tickets sold as a percentage of seats on the train? A train with, say, 400 seats and 400 tickets sold still might have a lot of empty seats west of Lancaster; would that be a load factor of 100%? Or would it be a load factor of 50% if (oversimplifying the numbers) the average passenger rode only half the length of the route?
  by west point
 
Literalman wrote: Mon Sep 05, 2022 7:01 pm "a load factor of 21%," 31%, and 40%: is the load factor a measure of passenger miles per seat miles? Or maybe the number of tickets sold as a percentage of seats on the train?
Always have had a problem with looseAmtrak definitions. An extreme example would be a certain segment of a train almostalwayys sold out. That is not 100% but some trying to book thru will get no seats available. and load meter will show 100%.
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