Amtrak will run all trains after Jan 1 PTC deadline

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Devil's Advocate

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Amtrak will run all trains after Jan 1 PTC deadline
In Scot Naparstek's own words he says...

Scot Naparstek (Amtrak COO) said:
While this risk analysis process and mitigation plan development is still underway, let me be clear that Amtrak’s goal is to continue to operate all of our services over all of our current routes come January 1, 2019. Exactly how we accomplish this will vary across our network, based on the specifics of each route, but I want to assure the Committee that, at this time, we believe we will have strategies in place that will permit us to continue operations until operational PTC or PTC-equivalency is achieved for all of our network.
That doesn't seem to rule out a bus bridge or even an outright replacement. The long term recommendations for anomalous operations across divergent sections aren't scheduled to be completed until the end of October.

Link: https://transportation.house.gov/uploadedfiles/2018-09-13_-_naparstek_testimony.pdf
 
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Devil's Advocate

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From the article...

“Replacing rail service with bus service for the nearly 11-hour bus ride from Dodge City to Albuquerque would disrupt service for passengers, increase barriers to travel and hobble local economies,” Senator Thomas Udall, a New Mexico Democrat, said in an email. “On top of that, trading trains for buses is less safe and reduces ridership.”
I'm inclined to agree with that assessment.

In Vermont, U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy, a Democrat, believes Amtrak has “sent too many mixed signals’’ about whether it will continue train service on two lines without positive train control, said his spokesman David Carle. The railroad hasn’t responded to Leahy’s request to say whether or not it plans to suspend service, Carle said.
It's unfortunate that senators and other primary stakeholders are still struggling with contradictory information and a continuing lack of timely updates and clarifications.
 

Anderson

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The phrasing here is a bit vague...the article gives the impression (which I suspect the senators in question have) that the "goal" is more-or-less contingent on getting FRA extensions (and/or exclusions, which should already be handled in almost all cases...I think the area around ABQ was an outlier on this front because of a local agency screwup, but there might be another oddball somewhere). If that's the case, then we should be fine. If not and this is a punt? *sighs*
 
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jis

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The phrasing here is a bit vague...the article gives the impression (which I suspect the senators in question have) that the "goal" is more-or-less contingent on getting FRA extensions (and/or exclusions, which should already be handled in almost all cases...I think the area around ABQ was an outlier on this front because of a local agency screwup, but there might be another oddball somewhere). If that's the case, then we should be fine. If not and this is a punt? *sighs*
As I have said before my belief is that, notwithstanding all the posturing by Amtrak, PTC is and was a bit of a red herring between Lamy and Trinidad/La Junta. It is more about getting commitment stable funding for upgrade and maintenance of the ROW, and playing range chicken about that. The real PTC danger to that route was and is in the NMRX region between Lamy and ABQ.
The bus bridge thing covers both areas and is part of the range chicken. The problem with range chickens is sometimes the missile does get launched as an unintended consequence.
 

John Bobinyec

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The phrasing here is a bit vague...the article gives the impression (which I suspect the senators in question have) that the "goal" is more-or-less contingent on getting FRA extensions (and/or exclusions, which should already be handled in almost all cases...I think the area around ABQ was an outlier on this front because of a local agency screwup, but there might be another oddball somewhere). If that's the case, then we should be fine. If not and this is a punt? *sighs*
As I have said before my belief is that, notwithstanding all the posturing by Amtrak, PTC is and was a bit of a red herring between Lamy and Trinidad/La Junta. It is more about getting commitment stable funding for upgrade and maintenance of the ROW, and playing range chicken about that. The real PTC danger to that route was and is in the NMRX region between Lamy and ABQ.
The bus bridge thing covers both areas and is part of the range chicken. The problem with range chickens is sometimes the missile does get launched as an unintended consequence.
What is "range chicken"? Google only comes up with "free range chicken".

jb
 

jis

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It is a game that is played by project managers when they know that the project cannot meet its goal (successful launch of a missile) but are unwilling to call a halt, so wait hoping that someone else will before disaster strikes in the form of the failed missile landing in the middle of a city.

The reference to range is to a missile range.
 
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me_little_me

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It is a game that is played by project managers when they know that the project cannot meet its goal (successful launch of a missile) but are unwilling to call a halt, so wait hoping that someone else will before disaster strikes in the form of the failed missile landing in the middle of a city.

The reference to range is to a missile range.
I remember that. In the '70s, we (the Air Force) were going to do a test - blowing up a Minuteman on the ground at White Sands Missile Range. Boeing was to deliver the missile to the site. We knew they couldn't make the date and they knew we couldn't. So we played chicken, telling them we were ready to go. They blinked. No extra cost to the government as compared to a big "delay" bill from Boeing. We could prove they were not ready (no missile would be delivered) but they couldn't prove we were not ready (we had planned a certain number of days to instrument the missile) which was included in the original price.
 
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