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Sunday(14)/Monday(15) Texas Eagles Cancelled

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20th Century Rider

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I think it's mostly due to the Ice and the remoteness of the Route between St Louis and Litttle Rock.

Of course, down here in Texas people freak out when a Cloud covers the Sun, let alone some Snow and Ice on the Roads. ( we do have LOTS of Flyovers and Elevated Roads)

But it doesn't seem to slow up the Freights, UP or BNSF.
We are 'lounging' out here on the Oregon Coast with squalls, rainbows, some sun... but no snow, ice, or outages! But we do tend to get hit hard in March. We shall see...Gasping at the big storm moving across the mid states and East!

Do stay warm!
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PVD

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There is a report that 8000 Moderna doses are at risk, since the back up generator supporting the storage facility has failed, they were figuring out how to distribute as many as possible. I don't know all the logistics, but I don't know how there isn't some type of truck mounted backup that can be brought in immediately. I know the NY city has them, the National Guard has them, as do many private companies. Many years ago, a hospital I was working at cracked a cylinder wall on their big Cat backup generator during a test, and we had a 40 foot trailer mounted unit there in an hour just in case. Lots of $$$ but can't take a chance....
 

Bob Dylan

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Just checked on my niece near you. Since she has electric heat, she has no heat, and gathered wood since her apt has a fireplace (never before used) flue and damper work, so she has some heat. Can't cook, has limited food that can be eaten (pretty funny since she is the manager of a supermarket) In may apt I have a manual can opener a couple of cans of sterno I grabbed at a Christmas party, and a bunch of small back up battery packs, each one is good for a day of cell phone. Those used to be pricey, now they are commonly given away as promo items with a logo embossed on them...Last big blackout by me was in 2003, but I missed it since I was in Lake Placid running a coaching education event for USA Hockey. My neighbors made sure my mother was ok and the phone worked so it wasn't too scary. No cooking, we are electric. We have all underground utilities by me so a power loss is pretty rare in this neighborhood.
That's funny, a Grocery Manager without food! The rest isnt, hopefully shell be OK and well all see the Sun and Spring starting Thursday after ( hopefully) the last Winter Storm!
 

jiml

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It sounds like the Texas and surrounding area is getting hammered in more ways than one! They're not equipped for this like those of us in New York, Ontario and Michigan (and other northern points). It sounds like Amtrak was prudent in cancelling those trains.
 

PVD

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That's funny, a Grocery Manager without food! The rest isnt, hopefully shell be OK and well all see the Sun and Spring starting Thursday after ( hopefully) the last Winter Storm!
You know the store, they have some excellent food, I don't know if the store has power, and if it doesn't, they will lose a ton of stuff. No way to get there safely the way roads are anyway.
 
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bms

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I'm in Denver on business, trying to go home to Cleveland. My plan was to take #5 to Glenwood Springs in the morning, get some pics from the train and in the little town in winter, stay in Glenwood for the night, then take Wednesday's #6 from Glenwood all the way back to connect to #30 to Cleveland.

Both the #5 and the #6 I planned to take were cancelled! I already booked Friday's #6 and can get home, it's just such a drag to ride the Zephyr all the way out to Denver without seeing Glenwood :(
 

Willbridge

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In all fairness, as Americans who live further north can attest, the southern US has no idea how to handle unexpected snow. We once spent 4 (yes 4) days trapped in Alabama after a foot of snow closed I-65. While the hotel tried to clear the parking lot with rakes and garden hoses, the only 3 shovels in the complex were in the trunks of two vehicles from Ontario and one from Michigan, who anticipated potential problems.
My ex is a native of Edmonton. In Denver, below zero temperatures as we have now are rare. She amazed other women in store parking lots here by pulling out our jumper cables and restarting their dead cars.
 

Willbridge

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I understand one of the reasons for rail cancellations is power failure. You can maintain the tracks perfectly, but if you don't have power to operate signals and switches and grade crossing, trains are probably not going to move very fast.

Also getting crews to replace dead crew on delayed train can be quite a challenge using roads covered with 1" ice.

The so called "all weather transport" thing about railroads has been a myth somehow etched in the heads of railfans since the first one came into existence as far as I can tell.
It came from fiction and memoir articles in old-time Railroad magazine. When I was a kid thumbing through back issues all I knew about Colorado and Wyoming railroading was "Call out the rotary!"

In practical terms, the crew is the weak link. Because they are paid well enough to buy houses (especially in rural areas), and because they don't usually have to commute in rush hours they tend to live further away than in the pulp magazine days. Before home telephones, train crews were called for extra board work by a kid on a bicycle in most weather. It's hard to imagine calling a crew in La Junta on a bicycle.

We have the same problem in urban transit work. At 4:30 a.m. an operator's 20-mile commute may only take 20 minutes. Then there's heavy snow and ice and suddenly the division clerk is trying to cover runs or they're pulling out late. The previous generation walked from nearby homes to the carbarn in 20 minutes in all weather.
 

Bob Dylan

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You know the store, they have some excellent food, I don't know if the store has power, and if it doesn't, they will lose a ton of stuff. No way to get there safely the way roads are anyway.
Yep, it's pretty Grim all over!😣
 

joelkfla

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There is a report that 8000 Moderna doses are at risk, since the back up generator supporting the storage facility has failed, they were figuring out how to distribute as many as possible. I don't know all the logistics, but I don't know how there isn't some type of truck mounted backup that can be brought in immediately. I know the NY city has them, the National Guard has them, as do many private companies. Many years ago, a hospital I was working at cracked a cylinder wall on their big Cat backup generator during a test, and we had a 40 foot trailer mounted unit there in an hour just in case. Lots of $$$ but can't take a chance....
Maybe they can't get a truck in because of the road conditions.
 

PVD

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Morning update is good news - quite a bit was moved to locations where it could be used right away without people traveling much, and Moderna instructed them on refreezing the remainder, which sort of indicates they got some power either for the facility or at least the freezers...
 

Eric S

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It came from fiction and memoir articles in old-time Railroad magazine. When I was a kid thumbing through back issues all I knew about Colorado and Wyoming railroading was "Call out the rotary!"

In practical terms, the crew is the weak link. Because they are paid well enough to buy houses (especially in rural areas), and because they don't usually have to commute in rush hours they tend to live further away than in the pulp magazine days. Before home telephones, train crews were called for extra board work by a kid on a bicycle in most weather. It's hard to imagine calling a crew in La Junta on a bicycle.

We have the same problem in urban transit work. At 4:30 a.m. an operator's 20-mile commute may only take 20 minutes. Then there's heavy snow and ice and suddenly the division clerk is trying to cover runs or they're pulling out late. The previous generation walked from nearby homes to the carbarn in 20 minutes in all weather.
I assume that's been a major factor, perhaps the major factor, in many transit systems shutting down or drastically scaling back service.
 

20th Century Rider

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That's funny, a Grocery Manager without food! The rest isnt, hopefully shell be OK and well all see the Sun and Spring starting Thursday after ( hopefully) the last Winter Storm!
Stay home and stay safe from the weather and covid. I learned to never open the fridge or freezer door when power is down... to prolong the time before food starts to spoil... maybe 3 days??? Wishing you hope and luck in snowy Texas! :eek:
 

railiner

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No cooking, we are electric.
When they converted from oil to gas heat, and upgraded the gas and electric service into the building, too bad they didn't also add gas lines to each apartment. but that would have cost a fortune, and not worth it...;)
 

Exvalley

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At first I thought it was lame that they canceled the trains. Boy, was I wrong.
 

railiner

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It came from fiction and memoir articles in old-time Railroad magazine. When I was a kid thumbing through back issues all I knew about Colorado and Wyoming railroading was "Call out the rotary!"

In practical terms, the crew is the weak link. Because they are paid well enough to buy houses (especially in rural areas), and because they don't usually have to commute in rush hours they tend to live further away than in the pulp magazine days. Before home telephones, train crews were called for extra board work by a kid on a bicycle in most weather. It's hard to imagine calling a crew in La Junta on a bicycle.

We have the same problem in urban transit work. At 4:30 a.m. an operator's 20-mile commute may only take 20 minutes. Then there's heavy snow and ice and suddenly the division clerk is trying to cover runs or they're pulling out late. The previous generation walked from nearby homes to the carbarn in 20 minutes in all weather.
Reminds me of when I worked for Amtrak at Denver Union Station, during the Christmas Blizzard of 1982...
Those of us working there on Christmas Eve, knew we might be 'trapped' there. So Amtrak arranged for some of us to stay at a downtown hotel, a few blocks away. Otherwise, if we did get home, we weren't going to be able to get back for a few days...
We racked up huge overtime numbers. (I worked a total of 104 hours that week). It was not 'easy' overtime either, like just waiting for very late trains...we were responsible for shoveling and plowing the station walks and platforms, in that sub-zero ice box. Just trying to push those baggage trucks, with their solid tires encrusted with ice, was near impossible. Watering the trains, with frozen hoses was a nightmare. In addition, we had to keep the station open all night, so that the delayed and/or stranded traveler's had shelter. And the trains were booked to holiday capacity. I spent three nights in total there, before getting home, 12 miles to the north.

Some accounts...

 
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PVD

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When they converted from oil to gas heat, and upgraded the gas and electric service into the building, too bad they didn't also add gas lines to each apartment. but that would have cost a fortune, and not worth it...;)
Not only would you be installing the new lines (and repairing the walls, you would be buying and installing a new oven and range in every unit. Not practical. City wants to shift away from gas cooking to electric, not the other way.
 

Willbridge

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Reminds me of when I worked for Amtrak at Denver Union Station, during the Christmas Blizzard of 1982...
Those of us working there on Christmas Eve, knew we might be 'trapped' there. So Amtrak arranged for some of us to stay at a downtown hotel, a few blocks away. Otherwise, if we did get home, we weren't going to be able to get back for a few days...
We racked up huge overtime numbers. (I worked a total of 104 hours that week). It was not 'easy' overtime either, like just waiting for very late trains...we were responsible for shoveling and plowing the station walks and platforms, in that sub-zero ice box. Just trying to push those baggage trucks, with their solid tires encrusted with ice, was near impossible. Watering the trains, with frozen hoses was a nightmare. In addition, we had to keep the station open all night, so that the delayed and/or stranded traveler's had shelter. And the trains were booked to holiday capacity. I spent three nights in total there, before getting home, 12 miles to the north.

Some accounts...

I was in Edmonton then but some of my later colleagues at RTD had similar experiences. A handful of people who were stuck in the office at the old Alameda Division kept things going -- when they could figure out which streets were open.
 

PVD

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Not only would you be installing the new lines (and repairing the walls, you would be buying and installing a new oven and range in every unit. Not practical. City wants to shift away from gas cooking to electric, not the other way.
You are missing the real fun, all of the elevators are being completely re-done. Not the cosmetics, but all of the mechanical, and electrical gear, door hardware and safety gear. One side of a building at a time. Multiple buildings at a clip. It is a 7 week job.
 

tricia

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A few hundred miles east from Texas ... it's not so bad here in western NC--17 degrees this morning (at 3000 feet here), a little icy snow on everything. We got buckets of rain while farther west y'all were getting snow, and this is the first serious cold we've had in weeks. More rain expected tomorrow.

My husband's out getting more firewood--it's been so muddy that this is the first solid ground we've had to run the truck on in the woods for more than a month. As long as we've got firewood for heat, propane tanks for the cooking stove, gasoline for the backup generator, and manage to keep the pipes from freezing we're fine. Keeping the pipes from freezing involves running a faucet overnight and also walking up to the spring a couple of times a day to make sure the apparatus that feeds into our water tank doesn't freeze solid (no pump--all gravity fed). We always think we'll have spare time in the winter, and rarely do. 😕 But we don't worry about power outages. :D

A different world from the one most of you live in--and nothing to do with Amtrak, since we're more than a 2-hour drive from the nearest station.

Back now to the actual topic of this thread....
 

Barb Stout

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Reminds me of when I worked for Amtrak at Denver Union Station, during the Christmas Blizzard of 1982...
Those of us working there on Christmas Eve, knew we might be 'trapped' there. So Amtrak arranged for some of us to stay at a downtown hotel, a few blocks away. Otherwise, if we did get home, we weren't going to be able to get back for a few days...
We racked up huge overtime numbers. (I worked a total of 104 hours that week). It was not 'easy' overtime either, like just waiting for very late trains...we were responsible for shoveling and plowing the station walks and platforms, in that sub-zero ice box. Just trying to push those baggage trucks, with their solid tires encrusted with ice, was near impossible. Watering the trains, with frozen hoses was a nightmare. In addition, we had to keep the station open all night, so that the delayed and/or stranded traveler's had shelter. And the trains were booked to holiday capacity. I spent three nights in total there, before getting home, 12 miles to the north.

Some accounts...

I believe that was the same storm I got caught in driving with an elderly lady from St. Paul, MN to Bismarck, ND (didn't make it that far). We were passing all these cars and trucks that had pulled off to the side of the road, but somehow my car didn't stall. However, it was colder with the heat on than with it off because of the blower. The elderly lady I was transporting was wearing a DRESS. Shortly before Jamestown ND, she said that she needed to take an angina pill and would need food to do so (maybe she just wanted to stop). I said that if we stop, we probably wouldn't be able to re-start (plus by this time the visibility was almost zero) so we pulled into a motel in Jamestown that was across the street from a restaurant. The motel clerk gave us a key to a room, but we couldn't get it open because the door was FROZEN SHUT. We went back to the clerk and she gave us a key to a different room and told us this was for her last room. We did get into that one because the door had been left AJAR and it was very cold in that room. We slept in the same bed for warmth. The next day we found out that the wind chill when we were driving the previous day was -90 F! We had been unable to plug my car in that night because someone had stolen the motel's last electrical cord for such purposes. Therefore we and everyone else in Jamestown were calling various mechanics the next day to get their car started. It took several hours for one of them to get to us. I no longer remember if this day was Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. And when one did, they told me afterwards the only way to get it started with this kind of cold was using ETHER which is apparently a dangerous thing to do. But they did get it started using ether and off we went with our wonderful scary winter story to tell.
 

railiner

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You are missing the real fun, all of the elevators are being completely re-done. Not the cosmetics, but all of the mechanical, and electrical gear, door hardware and safety gear. One side of a building at a time. Multiple buildings at a clip. It is a 7 week job.
I lived on the first floor...only inconvenience would be going down to the laundry room...:)
 

railiner

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I believe that was the same storm I got caught in driving with an elderly lady from St. Paul, MN to Bismarck, ND (didn't make it that far). We were passing all these cars and trucks that had pulled off to the side of the road, but somehow my car didn't stall. However, it was colder with the heat on than with it off because of the blower. The elderly lady I was transporting was wearing a DRESS. Shortly before Jamestown ND, she said that she needed to take an angina pill and would need food to do so (maybe she just wanted to stop). I said that if we stop, we probably wouldn't be able to re-start (plus by this time the visibility was almost zero) so we pulled into a motel in Jamestown that was across the street from a restaurant. The motel clerk gave us a key to a room, but we couldn't get it open because the door was FROZEN SHUT. We went back to the clerk and she gave us a key to a different room and told us this was for her last room. We did get into that one because the door had been left AJAR and it was very cold in that room. We slept in the same bed for warmth. The next day we found out that the wind chill when we were driving the previous day was -90 F! We had been unable to plug my car in that night because someone had stolen the motel's last electrical cord for such purposes. Therefore we and everyone else in Jamestown were calling various mechanics the next day to get their car started. It took several hours for one of them to get to us. I no longer remember if this day was Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. And when one did, they told me afterwards the only way to get it started with this kind of cold was using ETHER which is apparently a dangerous thing to do. But they did get it started using ether and off we went with our wonderful scary winter story to tell.
I don't recall if it was in the aftermath of that particular storm, or a different one, but the coldest temperatures I ever endured, were about -25° F, which lasted about three days. I had to get up hourly all night, to start my car, and run it for about 10 minutes, to insure it would start in time to get me to work in the morning. And then, when I started driving, the tires made thumps from the flat spots for a couple of miles, until they warmed sufficiently to round themselves out. This extreme may be normal for folks in Fairbanks, but was pretty rare in the Denver area...I don't even know what the wind chill was.
Four days later, it got up to a "balmy" zero degrees F temperature...:)
 

jis

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A few hundred miles east from Texas ... it's not so bad here in western NC--17 degrees this morning (at 3000 feet here), a little icy snow on everything. We got buckets of rain while farther west y'all were getting snow, and this is the first serious cold we've had in weeks. More rain expected tomorrow.
As long as you are not on the completely dysfunctional and disconnected from the two national grids, Texas grid, you should be much better off than the poor Texans.

In Texas it has been a massive failure of the entire grid caused by poor planning and disaster preparation, presumably because such things do not make money for anyone, and actually costs money. 🤷‍♂️
 

Bob Dylan

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As long as you are not on the completely dysfunctional and disconnected from the two national grids, Texas grid, you should be much better off than the poor Texans.

In Texas it has been a massive failure of the entire grid caused by poor planning and disaster preparation, presumably because such things do not make money for anyone, and actually costs money. 🤷‍♂️
True this! Worst State Government this side of Alabama and Mississippi !
 
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