Alstom making progress on Acela 2 contract

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jrud

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It WILL be a problem.....
Although, it certainly doesn’t completely compensate, the shorter cars on the #NewAcela with fewer people per car means it is not quite as bad as it seems.
 

Thirdrail7

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Interesting there is only one restroom on the new sets vs the two on the current Acela sets as well as Amfleets. I have only ridden the Acela twice, so I can't comment very much on restroom usage there, maybe someone else can, but I know on Amfleets, at least on the NEC, both restrooms are sometimes in use, and there can even be people waiting.
When they started drafting this train and the new equipment plans, they actually had a contractor come out and monitor the bathroom usage over the Thanksgiving travel period. They monitored the existing Acela and the Regional trains over the turns throughout the travel period to see if it was feasible to eliminate one bathroom. As long as they are serviced, it shouldn't be that much of an issue.....under NORMAL circumstances.

All about saving $$$$!

It is all about capacity. The ADA mandated bathrooms take up quite a bit of room. So does the accessible area. As such, cutting out one restroom per increases the area available for seating. With fixed seating, you don't need space to turn the seats so you don't have to compromise as much pitch.
 

cocojacoby

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When they started drafting this train and the new equipment plans, they actually had a contractor come out and monitor the bathroom usage over the Thanksgiving travel period. They monitored the existing Acela and the Regional trains over the turns throughout the travel period to see if it was feasible to eliminate one bathroom. As long as they are serviced, it shouldn't be that much of an issue.....under NORMAL circumstances.




It is all about capacity. The ADA mandated bathrooms take up quite a bit of room. So does the accessible area. As such, cutting out one restroom per increases the area available for seating. With fixed seating, you don't need space to turn the seats so you don't have to compromise as much pitch.
But is it necessary to make each car exactly the same? In such a fixed consist couldn't they have an ADA restroom and ADA seating area in every other car? Then they could have had a double restroom module in every other car increasing facilities by 50%? Actually maybe even four restrooms at the end of a few cars.

Is there a percentage of seats that has to be ADA? How many ADA passengers are on an average Acela anyway? Did they observe that?
 

AmtrakBlue

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But is it necessary to make each car exactly the same? In such a fixed consist couldn't they have an ADA restroom and ADA seating area in every other car? Then they could have had a double restroom module in every other car increasing facilities by 50%? Actually maybe even four restrooms at the end of a few cars.

Is there a percentage of seats that has to be ADA? How many ADA passengers are on an average Acela anyway? Did they observe that?
Counting number of ADA passengers would be the same as counting the number of men, number of women, number of <race>, etc. Maybe only 2 ADA passengers are riding during the time period counted, but may moe would be riding if there were more seats/space for them.
 

me_little_me

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Interesting there is only one restroom on the new sets vs the two on the current Acela sets as well as Amfleets. I have only ridden the Acela twice, so I can't comment very much on restroom usage there, maybe someone else can, but I know on Amfleets, at least on the NEC, both restrooms are sometimes in use, and there can even be people waiting.
I guess Amtrak will have to "dump" they're new ad campaign: "When you have to GO FAST, take the Acela!" ☺
 

Thirdrail7

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But is it necessary to make each car exactly the same? In such a fixed consist couldn't they have an ADA restroom and ADA seating area in every other car?
No...that is in violation of ADA rules.


(d) Passenger coaches or food service cars shall have the number of spaces complying with §1192.125(d)(2) and the number of spaces complying with §1192.125(d)(3), as required by 49 CFR 37.91.

The ADA requires that intercity rail trains provide a number of spaces for parking wheelchairs (for individuals who wish to remain in their wheelchairs) and a number of spaces for folding and storing wheelchairs (for individuals who wish to transfer to a seat) in single-level passenger coaches and food service cars equal to: (a) one half the number of coaches in the train by July 26, 1995; and (b) the total number of coaches in the train by July 26, 2000. Not more than two of each type of space may be located in any coach or food service car. Each coach or food service car on which wheelchair spaces are provided must have a wheelchair accessible restroom if restrooms are provided for the general public.


Then they could have had a double restroom module in every other car increasing facilities by 50%? Actually maybe even four restrooms at the end of a few cars.
Again, that would be in violation of ADA rules.


§1192.123 Restrooms
(a) If a restroom is provided for the general public, and an accessible restroom is required by §1192.111(a) and (e), it shall be designed so as to allow a person using a wheelchair or mobility aid to enter and use such restroom as specified in paragraphs (a)(1) through (5) of this section.

The ADA requires that single-level passenger coaches and food service cars with wheelchair spaces provide a wheelchair accessible restroom. This restroom must be located adjacent to spaces where wheelchairs may be positioned or stored. Single-level dining cars, single-level lounge cars, and the lower level of bi-level lounge cars are required to provide wheelchair accessible restrooms only if restrooms are provided for all passengers.


Is there a percentage of seats that has to be ADA?
As indicated above, there must be an ADA accessible area in the equipment by 2000. All new equipment must have an accessible area.

How many ADA passengers are on an average Acela anyway?

It is irrelevant since as noted above, you have to have an accessible area in each piece of equipment by 2000.


Did they observe that?
Probably not since that is not what they were supposed to observe.
 

PVD

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Airliner rules are different. There are separate laws that cover air travel (separate from airports, as an example).
 
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Ziv

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What the world needs is a good design for a standup, easily cleaned, unisex urinal that is acceptable to most women. Given the physical aspects of it, it might not be easy to design or gain acceptance, but adding a urinal takes up a lot less space than a handicapped toilet and it could be added in addition to the handicapped bathroom, thereby reducing the usage of the handicapped toilet immensely.
It seems like baseball stadiums have a design that works for a lot of women, if memory serves. I have never seen them, though.
 

daybeers

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When they started drafting this train and the new equipment plans, they actually had a contractor come out and monitor the bathroom usage over the Thanksgiving travel period. They monitored the existing Acela and the Regional trains over the turns throughout the travel period to see if it was feasible to eliminate one bathroom. As long as they are serviced, it shouldn't be that much of an issue.....under NORMAL circumstances.
All about saving $$$$!
It is all about capacity. The ADA mandated bathrooms take up quite a bit of room. So does the accessible area. As such, cutting out one restroom per increases the area available for seating. With fixed seating, you don't need space to turn the seats so you don't have to compromise as much pitch.
Normal circumstances meaning not at super peak times like Thanksgiving?
 

Thirdrail7

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Normal circumstances meaning not at super peak times like Thanksgiving?
Even during super busy periods, as long as they are serviced at the turns, they should be able to handle it. However, that is part of normal circumstances. An abnormal circumstance would be an en-route manipulation where the train didn't reach its endpoint. Another example is if the train is severely disrupted.

The amount of bathrooms isn't as important as the waste capacity tanks.
 

OBS

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Even during super busy periods, as long as they are serviced at the turns, they should be able to handle it. However, that is part of normal circumstances. An abnormal circumstance would be an en-route manipulation where the train didn't reach its endpoint. Another example is if the train is severely disrupted.

The amount of bathrooms isn't as important as the waste capacity tanks.
The current equipment has no problem going all day without being dumped. It's the issues with the doors coming off the tracks/being disabled and the vacuum pump failures that take bathrooms out of service that cause the problems....
 

me_little_me

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The current equipment has no problem going all day without being dumped. It's the issues with the doors coming off the tracks/being disabled and the vacuum pump failures that take bathrooms out of service that cause the problems....
Ad the people that use them improperly (putting items in that don't belong causing clogs and smells) and unwillingness of staf fto clean them often enough (I've seen them complain to the passengers then lock them rather than clean them).
 

Acela150

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A post on another forum indicate that the new Acela set in Philly won't touch the main line until PTC is installed on it.

I hope that I'm wrong, but this kinda seems like BS. It doesn't make any sense to me that a brand new piece of equipment wouldn't come with a critical component installed by the manufacturer.
 

west point

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PTC IT is so specialized that as a customer I would not want anyone installing it except the most capable persons. Lets see 28 train sets that is 54 installations over a 2 - 3 year time span. Not good!
 

Ziv

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If you are Amtrak and you are frequently having trouble with the toilets because people put items in them that shouldn't be there, items that make the toilet lose functionality, maybe the next time you order cars with toilets, which is nearly every car, you ought to stipulate a more robust design. Getting an employee to clean and do minor repairs to a toilet seems to be beyond the ability of Amtrak, maybe they can buy a tougher toilet next time.

Ad the people that use them improperly (putting items in that don't belong causing clogs and smells) and unwillingness of staff to clean them often enough (I've seen them complain to the passengers then lock them rather than clean them).
 

Acela150

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PTC IT is so specialized that as a customer I would not want anyone installing it except the most capable persons. Lets see 28 train sets that is 54 installations over a 2 - 3 year time span. Not good!
Fair point. But, Alstom is a key contractor and developer of ACSES, the PTC used on the NEC. And IINM, Siemens installed ACSES on the ACS units when they were being built.

I could understand your point more if these were something like P42's. Which need to have PTC installed and they've been around for years. But this is something brand new. Even the new Chargers for Amtrak will have PTC installed for each system used. Again that's IINM.

So to me non of this makes to much sense. If it's not installed on the set in Pueblo and Philly. I'm sure there is a very good reason. I can think of at least one, which is Software. Perhaps Amtrak wants to install the software on the set and make the appropriate mods that way the other sets can have the mods made at Alstom in Hornell. But that's the only logical reason I can think of.
 

cirdan

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Counting number of ADA passengers would be the same as counting the number of men, number of women, number of <race>, etc. Maybe only 2 ADA passengers are riding during the time period counted, but may moe would be riding if there were more seats/space for them.
Also, the number of people with ADA requirements might vary depending on any special events going on. Say the special olympics, or even an ADA march in DC. Would Amtrak turn people away because they have disabilities?
 

Acela150

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The set that is in Penn Coach Yard finally had the nose cone closed yesterday afternoon, along with a bunch of workers in orange vests around it when I passed by around 430ish.

On a side note, hopefully with testing now reaching High Speeds at TTCI the set in Philly will be able to touch the main line here soon.
 

Amtrak_Carolinian_2020

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Jan 14, 2020
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Any idea what type of horn and bell the Avelia Liberty will have? I assume the same K5LA/E-bell combo that the new Siemens locomotives have.
 

railiner

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Any idea what type of horn and bell the Avelia Liberty will have? I assume the same K5LA/E-bell combo that the new Siemens locomotives have.
I don't know, but your question has got me thinking...
Why hasn't someone come out with a powerful electronic speaker(s) that can replicate any horn, bell, or other sounds necessary for operation?
May or may not be cheaper, lighter, use less energy than actual devices....could be able to adjust volume to suit different locations and train speeds....
 

Green Maned Lion

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No...that is in violation of ADA rules.


(d) Passenger coaches or food service cars shall have the number of spaces complying with §1192.125(d)(2) and the number of spaces complying with §1192.125(d)(3), as required by 49 CFR 37.91.

The ADA requires that intercity rail trains provide a number of spaces for parking wheelchairs (for individuals who wish to remain in their wheelchairs) and a number of spaces for folding and storing wheelchairs (for individuals who wish to transfer to a seat) in single-level passenger coaches and food service cars equal to: (a) one half the number of coaches in the train by July 26, 1995; and (b) the total number of coaches in the train by July 26, 2000. Not more than two of each type of space may be located in any coach or food service car. Each coach or food service car on which wheelchair spaces are provided must have a wheelchair accessible restroom if restrooms are provided for the general public.




Again, that would be in violation of ADA rules.


§1192.123 Restrooms
(a) If a restroom is provided for the general public, and an accessible restroom is required by §1192.111(a) and (e), it shall be designed so as to allow a person using a wheelchair or mobility aid to enter and use such restroom as specified in paragraphs (a)(1) through (5) of this section.

The ADA requires that single-level passenger coaches and food service cars with wheelchair spaces provide a wheelchair accessible restroom. This restroom must be located adjacent to spaces where wheelchairs may be positioned or stored. Single-level dining cars, single-level lounge cars, and the lower level of bi-level lounge cars are required to provide wheelchair accessible restrooms only if restrooms are provided for all passengers.
Actually, I know you might know trains but you aren’t good at legalese. That law requires 1) as many handicapped spaces as cars on a train, 2) no more than two spaces in any given car, and 3) an ADA restroom in each car so equipped with such a space and a restroom. That means if You have a 10 car train, you must have 10 wheelchair spaces. You can have up to 2 spaces in any given car. If a car has wheelchair accessibility and a restroom, it must have an ADA restroom.

Technically, you could in fact build a train with ten cars, 5 having two wheelchair spaces and no restroom at all, and 5 having no wheelchair access and 20 non-ADA restrooms and meet that requirement to the letter. You could certainly build a train set with 10 cars, 5 with two wheelchair spaces and an ADA restroom, and 5 with no wheelchair access and a non-ADA restroom, and not only meet the letter, but the spirit.
 

jis

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Technically, you could in fact build a train with ten cars, 5 having two wheelchair spaces and no restroom at all, and 5 having no wheelchair access and 20 non-ADA restrooms and meet that requirement to the letter. You could certainly build a train set with 10 cars, 5 with two wheelchair spaces and an ADA restroom, and 5 with no wheelchair access and a non-ADA restroom, and not only meet the letter, but the spirit.
The thing to remember though is that when one has a mind set of "no fixed consist train ever" you buy yourself into the "one wheelchair spot and an ADA restroom per car" syndrome. I am not taking a position on the fixed consist thing this way or that, but just pointing out that base assumptions about the architecture of a train has consequences on what must be placed where to meet the legal requirements.
 
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