Discussion relating to the operations of MTA MetroNorth Railroad including west of Hudson operations and discussion of CtDOT sponsored rail operations such as Shore Line East and the Springfield to New Haven Hartford Line

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, nomis, FL9AC, Jeff Smith

  by DutchRailnut
Nothing like being head of Conndot rail and not knowing your A** from your elbow. since when do we turn locomotives in Waterbury to go to bridgport. and normaly the Waterbury line uses MNCR pool equipment and only SLE equipment in emergencies.

http://www.connpost.com/Stories/0,1413, ... 65,00.html

Midday train service to return
By ROB [email protected]

Saturday, August 21, 2004 -

The state Department of Transportation said Friday that midday train service between Bridgeport and Waterbury will return - for real this time - after Labor Day.

The DOT restarted midday service on the Waterbury line in July for three days before an accident on another line left the department just one locomotive wreck away from stranding 500 commuters a day on the Shore Line East line.

Midday service had been suspended on the Waterbury line last October due to a lack of funding, DOT said. But petitions by riders led the Legislature to allocate $200,000 to restore Valley service, which ran from July 12 to July 15.

Harry Harris, the DOT's transit bureau chief, said Friday the division is desperately thin on equipment and was using a Shore Line East locomotive to make the midday runs to Waterbury. The SLE line runs from New London to New Haven, but a special morning train runs into Bridgeport and Stamford. That was the train that was being used for the midday Waterbury runs.

That SLE locomotive, however, was involved in an accident in July east of New Haven, according to Harris.

The locomotive itself was sent to Albany, N.Y., for repairs, forcing the department to place its only backup locomotive into service, Harris said. The damaged locomotive is expected to be operational by Sept. 7, he said.

"If anything happened to [the backup locomotive] we would be out of luck, Harris said.

The decision to suspend Waterbury service came down to a question of risk and numbers, according to Harris. He said the SLE carries about 500 people, while midday service on the Waterbury line typically attracts 45 riders.

The Waterbury line itself is not dangerous, Harris said, but running that locomotive to Waterbury increases its chances of being involved in an accident. He said there have been several accidents at rail crossings and, on a few occasions, locomotives have derailed in Waterbury while being turned around to make the run to Bridgeport.

In a nutshell, Harris said he decided that the number of riders didn't justify the risk.

Buses will continue to run in place of the trains on the line, according to the DOT.

James Cameron, vice chairman of the Connecticut Rail Commuter Council, said the situation shows just how thinly spread DOT resources are.

Rob Varnon, who covers business, can be reached at 330-6216.

  by Lackawanna484
Has anybody sent this thread to Varnon, the article writer?

reporters are always looking for sources to give flavor, another point of view etc to stories. if it wasn't necessary to ditch the service (CDOT could borrow some power) I think he'd print it. Commuters would find it of interest.