• The future of FEC

  • Discussion relating to the FEC operations, past and present. Includes Brightline. Official web site can be found here: FECRWY.COM.
Discussion relating to the FEC operations, past and present. Includes Brightline. Official web site can be found here: FECRWY.COM.

Moderator: GOLDEN-ARM

  by Noel Weaver
I saw something at the start of the forums that this subject might be
consolidated into something else. I hope this will not happen.
The Florida East Coast gets more interesting to me the more I see of it.
I do not know a lot about it so maybe there might be someone on here
or who comes on here in the future who could better aquint us all with
this interesting line.
Incidentally, yesterday, Tuesday, they were running trains full blast, I guess the storm up north (in Florida) did not destroy them.
I do not think this line falls in the catagory of a "short line", ten or twelve
and maybe more freights each way a day, high speed freight operation,
well maintained track, equipment and facilities etc.
Yesterday, while having my supper at Peter Pan Restaurant, two north-
bounds went by and one had two SD-40-2's and a GP-40-2 with 140 cars
of rock, those engines were really barking too.
There is more to the Florida East Coast than meets the average eye,
please keep it on here.
Noel Weaver

  by AmtrakFan
I hope you weren't effected by Charlie. Yes the FEC line is an Interasting Line but do we consider it a Class One Not in My Standards. This is just my 2 Cents worth.


  by Legio X
When I vacation at the Disney resort in Vero Beach I try to get over to the FEC main to catch some of the action, but from what I hear, it's mostly at night through Vero...

  by Fla East Coast Chris
Hi Noel,
Yes well maintained track clean fuel efficient locomotives!!
Just like what the LOng Island Railroad has but in the opposite direction. A Gong Show every day here on the LIRR....
  by Noel Weaver
Agreed, the FEC is not a class I but neither is Guilford, Susquehanna or
some of the others on the board.
Thanks for the concern, no real problems around Fort Lauderdale, guess
we were lucky for this time.
The west coast got hit very hard especially around Fort Myers and Punta
Gorda, we need to pray for them.
Noel Weaver

  by ACLfan
I have always been impressed with the guts and gumption of the FEC! It only stretches between Jacksonville and Miami, FL, but it has always operated as the equivalent of a Class I railroad!


The FEC handled all of ACL's big-time name passenger trains to and from Miami during the golden age of railroad passenger trains.

The FEC has a major intermodal traffic program, and produces a lot of TOFC and COFC traffic to CSX and NS in Jacksonville. In fact, virtually all of NS's intermodal trains originate and terminate in FEC's Bowden Yard on the south side of Jacksonville. Additionallly, CSX has turned over the intermodal market in southeast Florida to the FEC. In turn, CSX - FEC intermodal traffic is interchanged in Jacksonville.

The FEC's mainline track bed consists of well-maintained, heavily-ballasted welded rail with CTC signals between Jacksonville and Miami.

It's truly class I in terms of equipment quality, traffic volume, infrastructure, and heritage!


  by engine999
Fec is a class 2 railroad. That long ballast train was actually a combination of two trains when it was first assembled. It was supposed to be 20,000 ft, with 4 lead locos and a helper in the middle. I heard that this train was supposed to take ballast north possibly to the pan handle. It had trouble getting moving, so they split the train up.


  by Noel Weaver
I am not saying that they don't do it but I have never witnessed any FEC
trains with either helpers or radio controlled slave units.
I have seen the unit trains go north with 140 cars and three engines and
they seem to go along just fine.
I paced one up Dixie Highway in the Deerfield area at about 45 MPH just
last week. Three SD-40-2's wide open and sounding good.
Got all green lights on Dixie Highway too.
Noel Weaver

  by ACLfan
I have never seen a helper on FEC trains, probably for two reasons:

1. The extremely flat topography, with no steep grades; and

2. I don't think that FEC has Remote Train Control technology in their locomotives, allowing them to be operated as mid-train (or rear train) helper units. [Unless the UP units recently acquired has the technology].

If FEC ever uses helper units, it would be getting the trains started from a stationary standing condition. The old Seaboard Air Line RR used manned rear helper locomotives on long, heavy eastbound freights out of the yard at Tallahassee, FLorida. The rear end helper would cut off on the run after the end of the train had topped the steep grade about 3 miles east of Tallahassee.


  by engine999
A friend told me this, so I can not confirm the accuracy. He was supposed to be gaurding a crossing for that train, so anything is possible.