BuddSilverliner269 wrote:Ron, you never cease to amaze me. Almost everyone who has chimed in here has no railroading experience whatsoever. The HHP locomotive was disabled and its pantagraph dropped. No power ,no ac. The train was disabled about 2 miles south of Landover interlocking which is about another mile from New Carrolton station. I was acela 2165 and heard what was going on. I had to stop next to a sb Marc local, pick up a technician, and drop him off alongside the train. While this was going on, a Marc diesel was coupling up from behind to try to get the train moving. I heard the train dispatcher tell the train crew to open all side doors to allow some circulation of the air. Although this whole situation could've been handled worst, I think amtrak did the best that it could. Was amtrak suppose to tie up the railroad anymore then it was? It WAS rush hour afterall and there is only 2 tracks in that stretch. Marc has bosses at Union station that I do see, and they couldn't rectify the problem? Why was a train not brought alongside to pick up the passengers? Probably it was due to the fact it was rush hour and I have been involved with quite a few train to train transfers and they could take up to an hour. So the train crews didn't suffer since they were stuck on this same train? I'm no apoligist, but I am a realist and a rail employee so I understand the kind of effort that it takes to fix these problems. I find it odd that you think or assume that amtrak doesn't know how to handle what happened and some other companies can do better? Many railroads fail in this category and if you say otherwise, you're a liar. During the winter, every railroad had problems and many shut down, but the NEC kept running whereas NS and csx were basically shut down. This is just more buff banter on let's blame amtrak for everything.
I have seen your posts for some time, and you have always struck me as a straight shooter, and a good person. It is dismaying to see you take this position. People cannot be trapped on a sealed transportation device in 90+ degree heat for 2+ hours, PERIOD. I do have a bit of railroad experience through my job as a civil engineer, but "railroad experience" has NOTHING to do with it! It is unacceptable when airlines do it, and it's unacceptable when railroads (Amtrak or otherwise) do it. The order you heard to "open all doors" was a good one, but every report I've heard from reputable news sources suggest that it was either too little, too late, or not obeyed! If Amtrak delayed a rescue train because of "rush hour," (I'm not saying they did, I'm just responding to your suggestion), then that was a BIG mistake. It is absolutely better to tie up the main line for an hour (or more) than to take the health risk of people in suffocating heat! The other delayed trains will at least have climate-control.
And what about all these breakdowns? It is WAY out of line, and has been reported so both by the media and the railroad (MARC) itself! Shame on WHOEVER'S responsible! Shame on MARC for the motive power situation, or the companies that built them, or the Amtrak crews who maintain them, or all of the above!
I don't have a horse in the race as far as who's responsible, but someone has to be held accountable, and something has to change so it doesn't happen again. The whole $*it happens, don't complain unless you're a professional railroader HAS to go!