Sumitomo and Siemens Venture evolution, development and deployment (2012-2023)

Amtrak Unlimited Discussion Forum

Help Support Amtrak Unlimited Discussion Forum:

TheMalahat

Train Attendant
Joined
Jun 15, 2016
Messages
59
Exactly. This sounds like some railfan created drama from message boards rather than something nearly as dramatic as being presented.

Given Amtrak seems to have given up out-of-service testing (except Acela) the reality is new things will come in & out of service at the beginning of their careers as they go through the teething process. Contrast this to Via and Brightline which both had/have extensive non-revenue testing.
 

jis

Chief Dispatcher
Staff member
Administator
Moderator
AU Supporting Member
Gathering Team Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2003
Messages
35,192
Location
Space Coast, Florida, Area code 3-2-1
Exactly. This sounds like some railfan created drama from message boards rather than something nearly as dramatic as being presented.
Specially considering the fact that the message board on which it was posted is rather well known for creating drama. ;) They thrive on it and even charge a fee for providing the entertainment :D
 
Last edited:

Amtrak25

Lead Service Attendant
AU Supporting Member
Joined
Dec 7, 2021
Messages
499
Location
New Jersey
One restroom per car ? That's commuter train mentality. Metra or intercity bus veterans must have been on that Midwest design committee.

Since when does Chicago pull cars for written up defects ? It must be really bad if that was the reason, or something else is up.
 

wildchicken13

Train Attendant
Joined
Feb 19, 2022
Messages
42
Maybe, maybe not. I have seen perfectly good design implemented poorly to cut corners, decisions made in the production line by geniuses who had little understanding of why the design was the way it was more times than I can count on the fingers of my two hands. There were even cases where the customer's genius project managers insisted on doing something over the objections of the manufacturers, because they were the customers and they knew better.
 
Last edited:

frequentflyer

Conductor
Joined
Jun 10, 2008
Messages
1,061
Apparently crews hate working with anything new. Anytime a new locomotive comes on line there are multiple reports about how terrible they are, worse than anything every seen before, etc. Eventually everybody calms down and the new equipment works just fine.
Reports of "everything is wrong with these cars and they all have been pulled from service" sounds like railfan rumours.

True, I remember the complaints about the GE Genesis locomotives..................and 30 years later.
 

jis

Chief Dispatcher
Staff member
Administator
Moderator
AU Supporting Member
Gathering Team Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2003
Messages
35,192
Location
Space Coast, Florida, Area code 3-2-1
These restrooms are almost identical to what’s on the Acela. How many bathrooms per car on the Acela.
They also happen to be ADA specified. I am not sure how much seating space would be lost if a smaller non-ADA toilet was added. Perhaps two rows, so 9 Coach seats or 6 BC seats roughly. At the end of the day it is a tradeoff.
 

Trogdor

BURNiNATOR
Joined
Aug 3, 2004
Messages
6,007
Location
Here
They may not be able to "refuse" cars. But they can just not use the cars that are on the train

When they were on the 303/306 turn, they were the only coaches in the consist. Unless you’re putting everybody in the cafe/business class car, there’s no way for them to not use the Venture cars.
 

Willbridge

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
AU Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2019
Messages
2,182
Location
Denver
New equipment can sometimes be immediately considered better than the old stuff. I've had a couple of experiences where transit shops learned to keep older buses in reserve so that when an operator on an older bus called in for a changeover, the replacement would be another older bus. That reduced the changeovers to a more normal level.
 

amtrakpass

Service Attendant
Joined
Jan 21, 2016
Messages
231
I don't have the link at the moment, but there has been recent mention of poor quality parts problems in official reports from the committee which is managing this car order, so it is not just speculation unfortunately. I'm sure there is some nuance to it and some of the doom and gloom is unwarranted but one of the basic problems in modern procurement seems to me to be that true public transparency and any accountability on timelines is sorely lacking. In previous generations you might have had a new equipment order have similar issues, but the cars would still be in service at least and then a fix would be in the works or a new order of a better model might be ordered to replace the poor stuff all within a few years. Now it seems like it takes at least a decade to get stuff ordered, tested and in service before it is all said and done which is just too long a timeframe
 

John819

Service Attendant
AU Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2021
Messages
154
Location
New York
That seems to be a design flaw. Mechanical devices designed to be used by the general public should be as "idiot-proof" as possible. Wonder if they had the same problem with these in their European applications.
You can't make anything idiot proof because they keep making better idiots. And in the US when some idiot gets hurt, he gets a lawyer and collects $$$.
 
Joined
Aug 27, 2002
Messages
6,698
Location
Chicago
On my trip on 303-306 on March 5, there were two venture cars, one horizon car, one amfleet car, and the food service/business class car. The crew did not refuse to use the venture cars. They sat short-haul passengers in those cars. Since the venture cars were at the front of the consist this was the normal practice even though the crew obviously viewed the cars with disdain.
 

jis

Chief Dispatcher
Staff member
Administator
Moderator
AU Supporting Member
Gathering Team Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2003
Messages
35,192
Location
Space Coast, Florida, Area code 3-2-1
So I guess you risk your life if you take a shower in a Viewliner too?
Apples and Oranges. Viewliners do not have CEM, and therefore no designated crumple zone. Still the ends of the cars tend to be more dangerous in a high energy collision than the middle as long as the train stays together. If it splits and jackknifes all bets are off.

When you have a designated crumple zone you do not place passenger facilities there. Baggage racks are fine.

Hardly. Every time you drive you are more at risk of being expendable based on the behaviors of other drivers than you would be spending 5 minutes in the bathroom on a train.
So accident happens and the car crumples where it is supposed to by design while someone was in that toilet. Now let us go to the inevitable legal action that would follow. The argument presented by the plaintiff's attorney "So you knew that by design that part was going to crumple and you placed my client there by placing a toilet there. How is that not your fault that my client died?"
 
Last edited:

jis

Chief Dispatcher
Staff member
Administator
Moderator
AU Supporting Member
Gathering Team Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2003
Messages
35,192
Location
Space Coast, Florida, Area code 3-2-1
So do you know if these cars have to go through the 800,000 lb. compression test or are they exempt from that because they have these crumble zones?
They do of course have to go through the test. These cars passed the test as mentioned in the AASHTO Meeting Reports.

It is required that the passenger safety cage not be deformed when a buff force of 800,000 lb (1,000,000 lb in case of Cab Cars) is applied in a static test.
 
Last edited:

NSC1109

OBS Chief
Joined
Aug 14, 2016
Messages
540
Location
MI
One restroom per car ? That's commuter train mentality. Metra or intercity bus veterans must have been on that Midwest design committee.

Since when does Chicago pull cars for written up defects ? It must be really bad if that was the reason, or something else is up.

My understanding is that Chicago has always pulled cars for writeups…it just depends on what it is. But a BO is a BO car.
 
Joined
May 13, 2014
Messages
684
Location
Boston & Florida
They do of course have to go through the test. These cars passed the test as mentioned in the ASHTO Meeting Reports.

It is required that the passenger safety cage not be deformed when a buff force of 800,000 lb is applied in a static test.

Okay but I guess I am a bit confused about the recent change that supposedly would allow the use of Talgo VI and the new Avelia.

From Railway Age (NTSB Amtrak 501 Report: “Errors and Unsupported Statements” - Railway Age):

“It took more than 100 years, but finally, last November, FRA issued a Final Rule for Tier III (220 mph) equipment providing alternate methods for demonstrating safety equivalent to the traditional 800,000 pound buff load.

“The irony is that a new provision in the Tier I rules (49 CFR 238.201, Scope/Alternative Compliance), allows new Tier I trainsets to alternatively comply with the new Tier III rules. Thus, while the existing Talgo Series VI sets must continue to operate under the FRA ‘grandfathering’ waiver, an identical, newly manufactured one would not need that waiver (or any waiver at all) if it could be shown to be in compliance with the new high-speed rules.


So since the Talgo VI did not comply because it did not meet the 800,000 lb load requirement, a new version would comply now. I thought the new crush zones may have something to do with it (allowing reduced compression standards) but apparently not.
 

jis

Chief Dispatcher
Staff member
Administator
Moderator
AU Supporting Member
Gathering Team Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2003
Messages
35,192
Location
Space Coast, Florida, Area code 3-2-1
Okay but I guess I am a bit confused about the recent change that supposedly would allow the use of Talgo VI and the new Avelia.

From Railway Age (NTSB Amtrak 501 Report: “Errors and Unsupported Statements” - Railway Age):

“It took more than 100 years, but finally, last November, FRA issued a Final Rule for Tier III (220 mph) equipment providing alternate methods for demonstrating safety equivalent to the traditional 800,000 pound buff load.

“The irony is that a new provision in the Tier I rules (49 CFR 238.201, Scope/Alternative Compliance), allows new Tier I trainsets to alternatively comply with the new Tier III rules. Thus, while the existing Talgo Series VI sets must continue to operate under the FRA ‘grandfathering’ waiver, an identical, newly manufactured one would not need that waiver (or any waiver at all) if it could be shown to be in compliance with the new high-speed rules.


So since the Talgo VI did not comply because it did not meet the 800,000 lb load requirement, a new version would comply now. I thought the new crush zones may have something to do with it (allowing reduced compression standards) but apparently not.
Your surmise is correct to an extent. Let me try to explain....

The thing to understand and that many miss is that the non-deformation upon the application of 800 Klb longitudinal static force applied to the entire car body in the past.

What has changed is that the car is seen as a structure consisting of two distinct components in the new standard. It consist of an outer car body, which now is allowed to deform into the crumple zone, and an inner safety cage which is not allowed to deform. Passenger occupancy must be limited to the inner safety cage.

The Talgos have the passenger safety cage that does not deform, as was amply demonstrated, but the car body does deform, hence it was not compliant with the old standard but a new train built similarly would comply with the Tier III standard.

The same 800,000 lb test has to be applied to the new cars to verify that the safety cage does not deform. In a well built car (like the Ventures) a static force of 800,000lb won't cause the outer car body to crumple either, and hence by default it will pass. The crumple zones come into play when there is a high energy collision when there is more energy that needs absorbing than in a static test. In that situation, these cars will deform in a predictable way while preserving the passenger safety cage, and not fold up like the Amfleet II Lounge did in the Silver Star. The energy will be absorbed instead into the crumple zone keeping the rest of the car safe.

I don't know if all that makes sense. If not let me know, and I will try again.
 
Last edited:
Top