• Lower Montauk Division Discussion

  • Discussion of the past and present operations of the Long Island Rail Road.
Discussion of the past and present operations of the Long Island Rail Road.

Moderator: Liquidcamphor

  by lirr42
Yup, basically the Lower Montauk has been turned over to the NYAR for their exclusive use. No LIRR trains move via that route anymore.

You can read more about it in that thread or by reading this post on my site.
  by Backshophoss
The Lower Montauk has been turned into secondary tracks, of no assigned direction,the block signals are believed to been shut down
as well and abandoned in place. The "C" Secondary between Bliss and LIC yard was handed over to NY+A as well.
NY+A has had a upturn in freight traffic after Sandy hit,plenty construction trash out,inbound stone and lumber.
  by Uncle Cheapo
Actually 2743 took the lower Montauk this past Friday. However it is an non revenue equipment west of Jamaica. Lirr work trains regularly ply the line.
  by DaveBarraza
There was a light engine move that headed east over the Montauk last week, around 7 at night.
  by freightguy
The LIRR and New York and Atlantic Railway are trying to get an FRA waiver to " discontinue the use of the automatic block signals" between LIC and Jamaica. The Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen local 56 says certain safety issues are at play.

I agree with the signalmen union those may pose some safety risks as the signals show the condition of the block. NYA is saying the trains would proceed at restricted speed. I believe the LIRR spun off the Lower Montauk to avoid having to install Positive Train Control( PTC) on that section track which is very costly. This info is from today's Newsday 9/24/13/
  by Doc Emmet Brown
Insanity, to save money. More proof that the Lives of Train crews are not considered. Train coming from the Montauk cutoff at 15 mph.. hits a train pulling into fresh pond at 15.. that's 30 mph on two freights..they have lost their minds.
  by Head-end View
The Newsday article said max. speed on the line would be 10 mph, which is hard to believe; that the line would in-effect be operated as a continuous yard. It also said that discontinuing automatic-block signals would somehow result in a change in the way crossing protection operates. That the gates and lights would only activate when a train is 50 ft. from the crossing.

I don't understand what automatic-block signals have to do with crossing signals. But, if trains are only operating that slow, maybe that delayed crossing activation would be better so drivers don't have to wait forever for a slow moving train to arrive at the crossing and maybe be tempted to go around the gates. Can somebody in-the-know elaborate for us?

Also, is this branch still double-tracked between Jamaica and L.I.C.? And if yes, are the tracks reverse-signaled?
Last edited by Head-end View on Tue Sep 24, 2013 6:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.
  by Amtrak7
I know that all NYAR freight still goes through Fresh Pond, but what traffic is there on the Lower Montauk west of Fresh Pond?
  by freightguy
I think right now MAS on that recently handed over section to NYA is now 20 mph. It seems like with deactivating the signals the trains would set off the gates on the island circuits on each side of the crossing. I think people would want it to revert back to the old way when they're sitting at 88st at Glendale waiting for a 60 car freight to pass at 10ph vs the LIRR's old 40 mph MAS. If NYA degrades it to a secondary like Fremont people will start to notice the difference at those couple crossing which are east of Fresh Pond. I guess the trains will tie up the crossings near Maspeth much longer though consist west of Fresh Pond towards Arch St and Maspeth yard tend to be much smaller.
  by northpit
old lower montauk 1 and 2 are now secondary tracks . easterly limits controlled by jcc jay,westerly limits of old lower montauk,sec c,montauk cutoff sec are controlled by nyar ym, just like most secondary tracks speed is restricted not to exceed 15mph.restricted speed means if you cant stop within one half sight distance slow down or stop.the problem with short distance gate circuits is stopping and starting with a large consist which is time consuming, imho if your not alert wayside signals aint gonna help.
  by DogBert
Amtrak7 wrote:I know that all NYAR freight still goes through Fresh Pond, but what traffic is there on the Lower Montauk west of Fresh Pond?

Biggest customer is superior aggregates in Maspeth. Long cuts of stone cars. There's a few others in Maspeth. West of there it's just Arch street & allied @ blissville, though WM is long rumored to be opening another MSW transload near Bliss. There's a few freights per week on this segment. If/when trash starts up that'll probably be a 6 day a week operation like the bushwick branch.
  by R36 Combine Coach
Arch Street has been declining in traffic now.

WM already has a truck transfer station on Review Avenue west of the former Penny Bridge station. Seems a likely candidate to go rail transfer.
  by DogBert
Everything at Arch st. is to move over to Wheelspur at some point. Transload customers come and go. It'll be interesting to see if someone takes over and receives rail at the Fresh Direct siding (if and when they ever decamp to the bronx). It would be an attractive facility to any customer receiving foodstuff, though they might not want it when they can just back a truck up to boxcars at grand ave and not pay rent.

WM has a plan to start loading containers somewhere around review ave in the coming year or two, though no work has been done on this so far as I know. Rail wise they just need a short siding back there and space to load the containers. empties & loads can be stored at Blissville (I imagine the CDEX cars stored there now will go into service when coastal starts loading in the bronx soon)
  by Jersey_Mike
Petitions to abandon signaling happen all the time when passenger or freight traffic dries up. Its not a safety issue, more an issue of ever getting the service restored.
  by Doc Emmet Brown
I still think Its a safety Issue. double track with crossovers and Yards along the way, all it would take is a slight human error for something to happen, or a car to roll out of the yard. Look what Happened when the Engine rolled out a few years ago. Also, they are not abandoning the line, they are just proposing removing the signals.
Newsday may say the limit will be 10, but lets face it the engine will have a 15 code with no signals, and most will be doing 15. Its all about, no passengers, who cares about the safety of the train crews. Hope someone does not rip open a tanker car filled with toxic chemicals or propane in that area of queens, its heavily populated.
Look in the timetable special instructions about operating with a speed failure. The speed limit is higher, when there is an engine on the operating end, as opposed to a cab car. Ask yourselves why? Because the Engine provides more of a barrier for the public. Guess the Engineer is expendable. The FRA should smack this one down, if they have a clue.
Since its years ago and everyone involved is retired or passed, Ill share a story about operations down there.
I was the Conductor On an Westbound heading into fresh pond from the east end. We got permission to use the crossover to go into the yard. Just as the rear end of my train cleared, and I was throwing the switches back. Here comes a Passenger train out of LIC around the bend at restricted speed, because the block signal was down due to the switch being opened.
The Engineer of the eastbound reamed me out, with some choice words. I said, hey I had permission don't look at me.. He said.. geez you got to be (bleep) ing me!
All it takes is a small mistake.
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