Quantcast

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

Help Support Amtrak Unlimited Discussion Forum:

MARC Rider

Conductor
Joined
Apr 5, 2011
Messages
2,590
Location
Baltimore. MD
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...;)
Having gas heat won't solve the problem of an electrical blackout as furnaces or hot-water heaters (I have gas-powered hot water heat) need electricity to operate the blower or the water pump.
 

railiner

Conductor
Joined
Mar 20, 2009
Messages
8,898
Location
Palm Beach County
Having gas heat won't solve the problem of an electrical blackout as furnaces or hot-water heaters (I have gas-powered hot water heat) need electricity to operate the blower or the water pump.
Having gas heat won't solve the problem of an electrical blackout as furnaces or hot-water heaters (I have gas-powered hot water heat) need electricity to operate the blower or the water pump.
True, but at least you could cook on your stove, and boil some water...although definetly not recommended for heating purposes...
 

Willbridge

OBS Chief
AU Supporter
Joined
Mar 30, 2019
Messages
720
Location
Denver
Every so often in Edmonton it would get down to --40 degrees. The magic thing about that temperature is that it is the same in Fahrenheit or Celsius. Other features of that temperature were how easily plastic and small metal parts break and how quickly the people who lived further north sneered at us wimpy city folks.

On the transit system if a Diesel bus had to be shut down for some reason then it would have to be towed into the garage to thaw out. The trolley coaches were wonderful in low temperatures but the newer types (Flyers and BBC's) drew as much power for "hotel services" as they did for traction. Still, it was nice to have the windows clear of frost. On Diesels some passengers would hold a lighter near the window to melt a peephole.

Here are a couple of photos from my morning commute back then. That thing in the sky in one photo is a PWA 737.

yegcoldtk.jpg

RynersonFeb79 - Rte 3 107th Avenue.jpg

0 Degrees Celsius isn't bad when you are prepared for it.
 

jiml

Conductor
Joined
Feb 27, 2019
Messages
2,558
Location
Somewhere in Southern Ontario
Every so often in Edmonton it would get down to --40 degrees. The magic thing about that temperature is that it is the same in Fahrenheit or Celsius. Other features of that temperature were how easily plastic and small metal parts break and how quickly the people who lived further north sneered at us wimpy city folks.

On the transit system if a Diesel bus had to be shut down for some reason then it would have to be towed into the garage to thaw out. The trolley coaches were wonderful in low temperatures but the newer types (Flyers and BBC's) drew as much power for "hotel services" as they did for traction. Still, it was nice to have the windows clear of frost. On Diesels some passengers would hold a lighter near the window to melt a peephole.

Here are a couple of photos from my morning commute back then. That thing in the sky in one photo is a PWA 737.

View attachment 20731

View attachment 20732

0 Degrees Celsius isn't bad when you are prepared for it.
Off-topic, but the demise of trolley buses is one of the great mistakes of our time.
 

JoeBas

Conductor
Joined
Dec 30, 2011
Messages
1,121
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. 🤷‍♂️
Don't forget unchecked capitalism and greedy deregulated providers. They sure play their part too.

ERCOT blamed this on "mechanical failures" and "Supply issues"... then late last afternoon, Governor Abbott signed an EO that prohibited Texas Natural Gas from being shipped out of state. All of a sudden, one day, the power outages DISAPPEARED. It's like a Miracle. :rolleyes:
 

JoeBas

Conductor
Joined
Dec 30, 2011
Messages
1,121
Shortage of Natural Gas!
In Texas?
Here's the background:

ERCOT made their power generation forecast based on the expected weather, including full input from their wind, coal, nuclear and natural gas components (Solar isn't all that big here yet).

Wind was slightly impacted from freezing turbines, and coal from the low temperatures causing mechanical issues. This put strain on the system.

Then, South Texas Project Unit 1 Reactor went down due to a cooling pump failure. This was what pushed the grid over the edge.

The grid still COULD have recovered, had we fully leveraged the Natural Gas components.

BUT...

Texas is deregulated. ERCOT bought the gas they THOUGHT they needed based on their modeling ahead of time, as a reasonable price. When the need spiked due to the above issues, the natural gas companies saw an opportunity to gouge, and jacked the spot price of the gas up astronomically. To the point that the power producers and ERCOT refused to pay.

So begins a Gamestop-esque short sale game of chicken, with the natural gas producers saying "Sooner or later you'll break and pay our extortion prices", and ERCOT and the power producers saying "Hold my ice cold beer"... with millions freezing in the dark caught in the middle.

It wasn't until Gov Abbott announced an EO yesterday that prohibited Texas-Produced Natural Gas from leaving the state through this coming weekend that things improved, as it broke the short and brought the spot price down enough to re-power the gas plants.

And suddenly, like throwing a switch, Houston went from 42% having power before the Governor's announcement, to 96% this morning.

It's a freakin' Capitalist Christmas Miracle. :rolleyes:
 
Last edited:

Willbridge

OBS Chief
AU Supporter
Joined
Mar 30, 2019
Messages
720
Location
Denver
Here's the background:

ERCOT made their power generation forecast based on the expected weather, including full input from their wind, coal, nuclear and natural gas components (Solar isn't all that big here yet).

Wind was slightly impacted from freezing turbines, and coal from the low temperatures causing mechanical issues. This put strain on the system.

Then, South Texas Project Unit 1 Reactor went down due to a cooling pump failure. This was what pushed the grid over the edge.

The grid still COULD have recovered, had we fully leveraged the Natural Gas components.

BUT...

Texas is deregulated. ERCOT bought the gas they THOUGHT they needed based on their modeling ahead of time, as a reasonable price. When the need spiked due to the above issues, the natural gas companies saw an opportunity to gouge, and jacked the spot price of the gas up astronomically. To the point that the power producers and ERCOT refused to pay.

So begins a Gamestop-esque short sale game of chicken, with the natural gas producers saying "Sooner or later you'll break and pay our extortion prices", and ERCOT and the power producers saying "Hold my ice cold beer"... with millions freezing in the dark caught in the middle.

It wasn't until Gov Abbott announced an EO yesterday that prohibited Texas-Produced Natural Gas from leaving the state through this coming weekend that things improved, as it broke the short and brought the spot price down enough to re-power the gas plants.

And suddenly, like throwing a switch, Houston went from 42% having power before the Governor's announcement, to 96% this morning.

It's a freakin' Capitalist Christmas Miracle. :rolleyes:
As sidelights, Mexico is angry about Texas diverting their committed natural gas supplies. And the price of gasoline in the U.S. is inching up due to refinery bottlenecks.
 

Willbridge

OBS Chief
AU Supporter
Joined
Mar 30, 2019
Messages
720
Location
Denver
Heck, 0° C. is just 32° F...it even gets down to that temperature here in FL occasionally....:)
It's true. That's why I was out with my camera that day. It seemed so mild out! The fact that it also is dark for both peak periods is the other reason there were so few pictures of rail and transit winter operations so far north. Also, at colder temperatures film speeds changed. With digital cameras now there are more possibilities.
 

JoeBas

Conductor
Joined
Dec 30, 2011
Messages
1,121
Need proof of what I'm saying abouy the natural gas? Benchmark price graph...

EuXDZm7XYAAheDU.png
 
  • Like
Reactions: jis

Lonestar648

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
2,793
Some Texas Utilities are projecting their costs during the emergency to be as much as 16,000% higher than budgeted. Big question is who is going to pay this cost?

I see Amtrak cancelled the SL departing 2/19 from LAX, not sure why since temps were above freezing during the day and forecast higher Saturday. Power has been restored except for Utility equipment failures. Water is supposed to be near 100% late today. Seems like Amtrak could have run Friday’s train.
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
21,621
Location
Austin Texas
Having gas heat won't solve the problem of an electrical blackout as furnaces or hot-water heaters (I have gas-powered hot water heat) need electricity to operate the blower or the water pump.
Yep, just happened last night where I was staying during Hell Week in Texas!
 

Lonestar648

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
May 17, 2015
Messages
2,793
My father, being an electrical engineer, built an emergency by pass switch, which enabled him to turn on the gas and lit it manually when we lost electricity in bad snow and ice storms. We lived in rural Pittsburgh. When we lost power in a 38” snow fall for five days, we had just enough heat from the furnace and our fireplace to keep the pipes from freezing. My father worked on the premise that you were on your own for 72 hours maybe more, so you had to be prepared. We had a gas stove, gas lanterns, lots of flashlights and batteries. We had a water well, but he insisted on an extra large tank so with emergency conservation, we could easily have water for days. After I left for college, he installed a government surplus army generator, which got used an average of once or twice a year.
 
Top