Amtrak delays

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AmtrakBlue

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SWC train #4 projected 10 hrs 25 min late going into Chicago today 8-12-22. That puts ETA at about 1:20AM tomorrow. Does anyone know what happened? If this keeps up it could have a severe impact on ridership.
Did you check Amtrak's twitter alerts? You'll probably get your answer faster from that than posting on a forum with your question.
 

TEREB

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Apr 5, 2009
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My son is on Train11 now going from Portland to Eugene. He just text me that they are delayed due to 2 different derailments.
Anyone have further information?
 

TEREB

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I guess they’ll be there a while. I hope they brought extra food with them as he got a Message this morning that there was no cafe car on the train.
 

trimetbusfan

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Portland
I guess they’ll be there a while. I hope they brought extra food with them as he got a Message this morning that there was no cafe car on the train.
Oh wow. I’ve been hearing of that happening more and more recently. On one of my recent trips the train didn’t have a cafe for the first 15 hours.

If he is in Coach they will probably order some food at a later station stop (most likely pizza or sandwiches).
 

TEREB

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55BD5A6C-9C10-4DBC-94B6-6F929BCE6140.jpeg

That’s the train station from above and the detailed train just before

We’re going backwards then rerouted to a freight line for a few miles to bypass it

They need staff from union Pacific to engineer the train apparently because the conductors don’t know the route we need to take?

These are my son’s texts to me
 

zephyr17

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Jul 23, 2009
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Washington State
View attachment 29190

That’s the train station from above and the detailed train just before

We’re going backwards then rerouted to a freight line for a few miles to bypass it

They need staff from union Pacific to engineer the train apparently because the conductors don’t know the route we need to take?

These are my son’s texts to me
Engineers must be "qualified" on routes they operate over. That means they must be extremely familiar with physical characteristics of the line. If they are detoured over a route they are not qualified on, a "pilot" engineer who is qualified must be in the cab. Although the original engineer will often still be operating the train.

In this case, it sounds like the train will back up to North Portland Junction where UP resumes its own line from the trackage rights it has on BNSF from Tacoma to North Portland. It will the proceed down the UP from North Portland Junction via Albina to East Portland just across the Steel Bridge from the station, where the normal route is regained.

It is lucky that
a. A detour route is available
b. UP is willing to allow it
c. A UP pilot engineer is available.
 

TEREB

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Messages
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Engineers must be "qualified" on routes they operate over. That means they must be extremely familiar with physical characteristics of the line. If they are detoured over a route they are not qualified on, a "pilot" engineer who is qualified must be in the cab. Although the original engineer will often still be operating the train.

In this case, it sounds like the train will back up to North Portland Junction where UP resumes its own line from the trackage rights it has on BNSF from Tacoma to North Portland. It will the proceed down the UP from North Portland Junction via Albina to East Portland just across the Steel Bridge from the station, where the normal route is regained.

It is lucky that
a. A detour route is available
b. UP is willing to allow it
c. A UP pilot engineer is available.
Thank you for your explanation. I’ll be sure to tell my son.
 

MIrailfan

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How come the engineer has to know the physical characteristics? Relief bus drivers/airline pilots only have to be qualified on the bus/plane they are driving or flying, respectively.
 
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How come the engineer has to know the physical characteristics? Relief bus drivers/airline pilots only have to be qualified on the bus/plane they are driving or flying, respectively.
Some airports require that pilots have special training to land there due to terrain, other obstacles or limited approach routes.

Route knowledge means that the engineer will know where crossings and switches are, amongst other things.
 
Joined
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Washougal, Washington
My son is on Train11 now going from Portland to Eugene. He just text me that they are delayed due to 2 different derailments.
Anyone have further information?

Did your son detrain at Eugene? Train 11 is now getting a daylight trip down the Sacramento River Canyon and over Shasta Lake. It would be hell to be that late, but the scenery is a compensation.
 

zephyr17

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How come the engineer has to know the physical characteristics? Relief bus drivers/airline pilots only have to be qualified on the bus/plane they are driving or flying, respectively.
Just the opposite for railroads, operating crews must be qualified on the physical characteristics of the territory they operate over, but can operate any locomotive.

The reason is they must know precisely where they are at all times. Curves and grades drastically affect train handling and slack action for freight trains and poor train handling on a 12,000 foot freight train with half going downhill and half uphill can cause the train to break in two.

It is also required for general safety. If there is a track gang with working with limits between MP 46.3 and MP 47.1, you had better know where that is, how far you are from it, when and where you have to call the gang foreman for permission to proceed through those limits before you get there.

A simple illustration of the requirement for familiarity is the Nisqually wreck of 2017. While the NTSB called out several contributing factors, one was that Amtrak's qualification runs for crews on the new line were insufficient. The engineer on that train had only ONE run southbound run at the throttle during qualification. On the wreck train, he lost track of precisely where he was, thought he was not as far down the line as he was, and went into a 30 mph curve at nearly 80 mph, only applying the brakes shortly before when he realized his error. Both distraction and inattention were ruled out as causes, he had insufficient situational awareness due to improper qualification.

Three people died.
 
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west point

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SW ATL airport
For the back up at PDX the back up conductor would also need a pilot. Maybe the conducctor was qualified for the BNSF tracks even though he operates south of PDX or the inbound conductor from SEA stayed on duty to do the back up?
 

zephyr17

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For the back up at PDX the back up conductor would also need a pilot. Maybe the conducctor was qualified for the BNSF tracks even though he operates south of PDX or the inbound conductor from SEA stayed on duty to do the back up?
Either way, the T&E crew that brought the train down from Seattle probably still had hours left and my understanding is all PDX crews are qualified all routes out of PDX, north to Seattle, south to K Falls, and east to Pasco (engineers)/Spokane (conductors).

From a HOS standpoint, it might have made sense to hold the Seattle crew and have them perform the backup move and UP detour, and have the southbound crew come on duty at East Portland. They probably didn't though, the PDX-KFS crew probably came on duty at Union Station and did the backup/detour.
 

Shanson

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Austin TX
That Portland delay is requiring passengers who were planning to connect with 2/422 at LAX to do so in Ontario.

In the meantime 2/422 was delayed 30 minutes in departing duke to a sleeper passenger being unhappy with his room and becoming belligerent. The authorities had to be called. (He saw the online photos of a Bedroom, but booked a Roomette. "I'm not sleeping in that!")

EDIT: turns out his daughter did the booking. He had no idea what he was getting, so it was a complete shock. But he did not react well.
 
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mikewrite

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Here's how the 6 train of the CZ has done arriving in CHI since mid July. Had my gal and I known of all this madness we would never have attempted this Yellowstone bucket-list trip by Amtrak! We'd have worked out some way to drive it or ride buses or something. And from what I'm reading in these forums, this is the norm across the LD trains. I'm just astounded by the "service" being provided. Any other business would fold very quickly.

amstad_slc-chi.jpg
 

Bonser

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Jersey City
Here's how the 6 train of the CZ has done arriving in CHI since mid July. Had my gal and I known of all this madness we would never have attempted this Yellowstone bucket-list trip by Amtrak! We'd have worked out some way to drive it or ride buses or something. And from what I'm reading in these forums, this is the norm across the LD trains. I'm just astounded by the "service" being provided. Any other business would fold very quickly.

View attachment 29228
And it doesn't improve going back into June.
 
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