Discussion about Florida passenger rail operations including proposals. Official web-sites:
Miami/Dade Metrorail, Sunrail (Orlando), and Tri-County Commuter Rail Authority
For Virgin Rail/Brightline: Virgin Trains Worldwide (includes Brightline)

Moderator: Kurt-Trirail

  by Noel Weaver
 
Today's Sun-Sentinel has a good article about the way CSX is ripping off
Tri-Rail and its commuters by their methods of dispatching. Finally maybe
somebody with Tri-Rail has had it with CSX and their nonsense.
Trains have been late all week due to signal outages (actually some are
being changed, added to and replaced) but the outrageous part is that
the CSX is delaying Tri-Rail trains for their own freight trains and that is
a no no on the state owned railroad as it should be.
Tri-Rail will NEVER be the classy operation that they want it to be until they
dump CSX entirely and operate the railroad themselves with their own
people on the scene locally.

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/ ... ws-broward


Noel Weaver

  by AmtrakFan
 
I thought CSX had a freight Curfew Knowning CSX they just break it.
  by Noel Weaver
 
Sun-Sentinel for Friday, July 15th, 2005 has an interesting article in
relation to Tri-Rail and CSX dispatching. Hope the following link will get it
for you to read:

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/ ... tory?coll=

Noel Weaver

  by quadrock
 
I heard there were some delays last week due to a truck spilling bricks and other material onto the ROW from a crash on I-95. Not sure how bad but anything causing even more derails on Tri-Rail can't be good for its ridership.
  by Noel Weaver
 
Another article in the Sun-Sentinel on May 27th but I am having trouble
pulling it to get a link so I will briefly sumise the most interesting part.
The heading relates to the director receiving a raise which I think is most
legit, for most other commuter operators, the director would be paid much
more than what he is here.
The key part was the last paragraph where the article mentions that the
state is in talks with CSX to turn over dispatching to Tri-Rail. This is very
badly needed if Tri-Rail is to meet their goal of an on time operation.
It is very evident to me and probably everybody else that CSX just does
not care one least little bit about this line. Track work is apparently not
being properly done as there seems to be a number of slow orders, the
grade crossings are rough as can be and the dispatching is absolutely
horrible. I hope they will not let up on this until they have full control over
their railroad and our railroad.
Noel Weaver

  by braves2905
 
Mr. Weaver, any new information regarding Tri-Rail taking over CSX dispatching,etc. duties?
In regards to the maintenance on the line, my buddy was qualifying from Miami to Tampa with Amtrak, and he told me last month he had, and no this is not a misprint, 62 slow orders! At Sebring, the dispatcher called P091, and said the inspector found over 30 locations that were unsafe. When I took my trips, I looked forward to getting into West Palm Beach with all of the new tracks. I cannot believe anything north of the Miami Sub, on the Auburndale Sub is rated for 79mph. You think the damn train is going to derail half of the time. Bad switches, rotting ties, and shoddy ballast work.
The dispatching is a mess. How do you screw up maybe 2 to 3 freight trains a day with our Amtrak's, and the Tri-Rails? Maybe I am just unlucky, but every experience I've ever had with CSX dispatching has been bad; running Jacksonville to Florence,sc, Jax to hamlet,nc, Jax to Tampa, Tampa to Miami. Most Amtrak T&E people down here hate CSX dispatchers, we feel lilke the bastard step-child, but like the oldheads say, "son, you're getting paid by the hour."

  by Noel Weaver
 
As I have said before, CSX is the result of a bunch of good railroads
being merged into one but the worst of each former railroad was the part
that made up CSX. I can't believe just how bad it really is.
I don't think CSX really cares about serving this area, there was talk a
while back that they were going to sell the line but so far, this has not
happened. CSX runs one or two through freight trains in each direction a
day but right next door, the Florida East Coast runs a dozen or more each
way a day and the timekeeping on the Florida East Coast is probably
better than Amtrak is on CSX. I think CSX will run the line into the
ground and then bail out and sell or lease it out.
I know that Tri-Rail is very unhappy with CSX and maybe things will just
have to get a little bit more ridiculous before they finally do something
about it.
Noel Weaver

  by braves2905
 
Its a shame, FEC called off the Amtrak talks a while back to use their line into Miami. Compared to CSX, the FEC is a direct shot into Miami, not to mention better track/dispatching.
Well, I think CSX is doing a good job of running the line into the ground, just like every other track in Florida it seems. The signal system failures really kill Amtrak, especially after the all the rain on their A-line trackage and the Auburndale/Miami Subs. It is no fun manually throwing every switch during a failure, did it one time, which was enough for me...thought i left freight service behind...
All joking aside, the maintenance all together is rotten throughtout Florida. I find it interesting, CSX views JAX to TPA, as a corridor of future earnings growth. Funny, I thought you had to maintain a working infrastructure to generate earnings...hmm..Maybe I didn't attend the John Snow School of Business.

  by Rockingham Racer
 
The squeaky wheel gets the attention. Are the commuters screaming, so Tri-Rail gets moving against the CSX baloney? Metra met with UP management about the same problem, and delays to Metra's trains disappeared.

  by Noel Weaver
 
I don't think the riders (commuters) on Tri-Rail have been through enough
yet to really complain. They have been through some pretty long delays
but they may not be aware that CSX is the cause of the problem.
For the past few years, CSX had frequently displayed utter contempt for
passengers, commuter agencies, Amtrak, their employees, the
communities that they are supposed to serve, their customers and
probably even their stockholders.
In most cases, all of the above are captive to CSX and the railroad is "lord
and king". In the case of Tri-Rail, CSX should NOT be "lord and king".
It is time to get rid of CSX so far as the operation, dispatching and
maintenance of this important corridor is concerned. CSX should have
trackage rights to handle their freight business and nothing more than
that.
Noel Weaver

  by braves2905
 
There is a rumor floating around about Amtrak assuming operations of the trains. Some top Amtrak brass met with Tri-Rail, the contract on the service expires this year, and apparently Tri-Rail is shopping around. The only section not double tracked is the new river bridge, correct? How would Tri-Rail assume dispatching ability, the system is tied into JAX, right?

  by Noel Weaver
 
I doubt if Amtrak will be involved with the present Tri-Rail commuter train
operation. I think the authorities are generally satisfied with Herzog.
In addition, with conditions being what they are, Amtrak's days here could
well be numbered, there are a lot of slow orders on CSX and eventually
Amtrak could decide to pull the plug. This is something like the situation
that Amtrak found itself in with Guilford a few years back, Guilford would
not properly maintain the line and eventually Amtrak took over the line
and turned it over to the Central Vermont. Not sure that you would see
something like that in Florida as the state does not seem to really care
about Amtrak service anyway.
As far as Tri-Rail taking over the dispatching, it would not be that big of a
deal, everything is computerized today.
Noel Weaver
  by Noel Weaver
 
Thursday, August 3rd Sun-Sentinel has an article about Tri-Rail taking
over dispatching on their railroad. Article states that when the new bridge
in Fort Lauderdale over the New River opens next spring, Tri-Rail will take
over the dispatching. Article also states that CSX has agreed to that and
has further agreed that there will not be a cost to Tri-Rail to cover the
labor agreements for CSX workers.
This is indeed good news.
This is part of a larger agreement that allows Tri-Rail to expand south to
Homestead although I am not sure that this will happen anytime soon.
Expanding the already existing "busway" from Kendall south would be a
lot cheaper and would provide a direct connection to Metro-Rail for the
downtown area of Miami. I would like them to change over the existing
"busway" to a light rail system but again, I don't see that anytime soon or
maybe at all.
Unfortunately, I tried to provide a link from this article on here but for
some reason, the article does not appear in the web site edition of the
Sun-Sentinel.
There are also big doings regarding commuter rail in the Orlando area but
I guess that is outside of this topic as it is a long way from Tri-Rail
operations.
Noel Weaver