why do they blow the horn so much

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gingee

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On citty of new orleans. Gad, that horn has been blarring quite often. Night too. Is this a new rule or something?
 

Texan Eagle

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On citty of new orleans. Gad, that horn has been blarring quite often. Night too. Is this a new rule or something?
Wherever there are railroad crossings, the engineer is required to blow the horn to warn off motorists and trespassers. It's the law. In spite of all the horn blaring, you'd be surprised to know how many vehicles and people manage to get themselves in front of passing trains (and get killed). If the engineer stops blaring horns, things would get only worse.
 

greatcats

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There are some localities that pass an ordinance that trains do not have to blow the whistle for crossings if they are properly protected by lights, bells and gates. Flagstaff, Arizona is a good example. The downtown is a whole lot quieter since that was passed. In most other places, however, it is required that the engineer blow the whistle, and as the previous poster indicated, too often it is ignored.
 

amtrakwolverine

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I live 20 feet from a NS line and a few engineers even at 2am seam to just lay on the horn for no reason or random horn blowing no long long short long. there\s a double crossing each with double gates since its 2 one way streets separated by a island. no need to lay on the horn like a car a stuck on it even at 3am. Not all the engineers do it only a few. some will just lightily toot the horn at night while others are horny lol.
 

George Harris

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I live 20 feet from a NS line and a few engineers even at 2am seam to just lay on the horn for no reason or random horn blowing no long long short long. there\s a double crossing each with double gates since its 2 one way streets separated by a island. no need to lay on the horn like a car a stuck on it even at 3am. Not all the engineers do it only a few. some will just lightily toot the horn at night while others are horny lol.
The super horn blowers are probably guys that have hit someone and most likely at one of those crossing.
 
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It's a train, there's a horn, and there are way too many people who think, wrongly, that they can win a race with a train - gates, lights, or any combination of them....or not.

I don't even notice the horn when I'm on the train anymore - doesn't matter... I love the sound.
 

Dutchrailnut

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I live 20 feet from a NS line and a few engineers even at 2am seam to just lay on the horn for no reason or random horn blowing no long long short long. there\s a double crossing each with double gates since its 2 one way streets separated by a island. no need to lay on the horn like a car a stuck on it even at 3am. Not all the engineers do it only a few. some will just lightily toot the horn at night while others are horny lol.

There is no federal law that states how loud engineer has to blow the horn, just that he has to and at certain sequence.

The fact that a crossing has 4 quadrant gates and a island does not relieve the engineer from blowing the horn, only if its a certified Whistle free zone.

Most towns refuse to take respocibility for such crossings cause they full well know their citizens are idiots.
 

MattW

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Wait, can train engineers control the volume of the horn? I know most British trains can do that, but I didn't think American trains, particularly Amtrak's engines had control over the loudness.
 

Dutchrailnut

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Wait, can train engineers control the volume of the horn? I know most British trains can do that, but I didn't think American trains, particularly Amtrak's engines had control over the loudness.
the Genesis has a two step Horn Button, push it half and you get half, push it full you get full.

Even the original horn valves on locomotived had a two step valve with a small mushroom valbe that opened before main valve opened
 

the_traveler

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If someone does like the sound of the train horn at 2 AM, why did they move near the tracks? Most likely, the tracks (and crossing) were there prior to the people moving in! :rolleyes: That's like people who move next to an airport - and then complain about the jet noise! :rolleyes:

An apartment complex I am thinking about moving to is directly across the tracks from Portland's Union Station. In reading the reviews of the complex, there was one "Negative" that many people pointed out. That thing is "... the train horns and/or noise ..." at all hours! It seems that before moving in, they may have noticed that big building (that's been there for over 100 years), those traks between the complex and the station and the platforms! Yet, they complain about the train noise! :wacko: So why did they chose to move into that complex? :huh:

I don't get it! :blink: kj m
 

zephyr17

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I live 20 feet from a NS line and a few engineers even at 2am seam to just lay on the horn for no reason or random horn blowing no long long short long. there\s a double crossing each with double gates since its 2 one way streets separated by a island. no need to lay on the horn like a car a stuck on it even at 3am. Not all the engineers do it only a few. some will just lightily toot the horn at night while others are horny lol.

There is no federal law that states how loud engineer has to blow the horn, just that he has to and at certain sequence.

The fact that a crossing has 4 quadrant gates and a island does not relieve the engineer from blowing the horn, only if its a certified Whistle free zone.

Most towns refuse to take respocibility for such crossings cause they full well know their citizens are idiots.
Minimum sound level of a locomotive horn is also mandated by the FRA. Whether the engineer has control beyond that,I don't personally know, although I'll take Dutchrailnut's post about the control feature in the P42.
 

George Harris

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finally! Back in Mississippi
I live 20 feet from a NS line and a few engineers even at 2am seam to just lay on the horn for no reason or random horn blowing no long long short long. there\s a double crossing each with double gates since its 2 one way streets separated by a island. no need to lay on the horn like a car a stuck on it even at 3am. Not all the engineers do it only a few. some will just lightily toot the horn at night while others are horny lol.
There is no federal law that states how loud engineer has to blow the horn, just that he has to and at certain sequence.

The fact that a crossing has 4 quadrant gates and a island does not relieve the engineer from blowing the horn, only if its a certified Whistle free zone.

Most towns refuse to take respocibility for such crossings cause they full well know their citizens are idiots.
Minimum sound level of a locomotive horn is also mandated by the FRA. Whether the engineer has control beyond that,I don't personally know, although I'll take Dutchrailnut's post about the control feature in the P42.
There is a very precise regulation on horn sequence and duration of blowing, and also loudness, as follows:

§ 222.21 When must a locomotive horn be used? (a) Except as provided in this part, the locomotive horn on the lead locomotive of a train, lite locomotive consist, individual locomotive or lead cab car shall be sounded when such locomotive or lead cab car is approaching a public highway-rail grade crossing. Sounding of the locomotive horn with two long blasts, one short blast and one long blast shall be initiated at a location so as to be in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section and shall be repeated or prolonged until the locomotive occupies the crossing. This pattern may be varied as necessary where crossings are spaced closely together.

(b)(1) Railroads to which this part applies shall comply with all the requirements contained in this paragraph (b) beginning on December 15, 2006. On and after June 24, 2005, but prior to December 15, 2006, a railroad shall, at its option, comply with this section or shall sound the locomotive horn in the manner required by State law, or in the absence of State law, in the manner required by railroad operating rules in effect immediately prior to June 24, 2005.

(2) Except as provided in paragraphs (b)(3) and (d) of this section, or when the locomotive horn is defective and the locomotive is being moved for repair consistent with section 229.9 of this chapter, the locomotive horn shall begin to be sounded at least 15 seconds, but no more than 20 seconds, before the locomotive enters the crossing. It shall not constitute a violation of this section if, acting in good faith, a locomotive engineer begins sounding the locomotive horn not more than 25 seconds before the locomotive enters the crossing, if the locomotive engineer is unable to precisely estimate the time of arrival of the train at the crossing for whatever reason.

(3) Trains, locomotive consists and individual locomotives traveling at speeds in excess of 60 mph shall not begin sounding the horn more than one-quarter mile (1,320 feet) in advance of the nearest public highway-rail grade crossing, even if the advance warning provided by the locomotive horn will be less than 15 seconds in duration.
49 CFR § 229.129 Locomotive horn.(a) Each lead locomotive shall be equipped with a locomotive horn that produces a minimum sound level of 96 dB(A) and a maximum sound level of 110 dB(A) at 100 feet forward of the locomotive in its direction of travel. The locomotive horn shall be arranged so that it can be conveniently operated from the engineer's usual position during operation of the locomotive.
Note that these requirements are not even next to each other in the CFR.

Here are the two main items:

Sounding of the locomotive horn with two long blasts, one short blast and one long blast shall be initiated at a location so as to be in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section and shall be repeated or prolonged until the locomotive occupies the crossing.

and:

minimum sound level of 96 dB(A) and a maximum sound level of 110 dB(A) at 100 feet forward of the locomotive
 
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Dutchrailnut

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I live 20 feet from a NS line and a few engineers even at 2am seam to just lay on the horn for no reason or random horn blowing no long long short long. there\s a double crossing each with double gates since its 2 one way streets separated by a island. no need to lay on the horn like a car a stuck on it even at 3am. Not all the engineers do it only a few. some will just lightily toot the horn at night while others are horny lol.

There is no federal law that states how loud engineer has to blow the horn, just that he has to and at certain sequence.

The fact that a crossing has 4 quadrant gates and a island does not relieve the engineer from blowing the horn, only if its a certified Whistle free zone.

Most towns refuse to take respocibility for such crossings cause they full well know their citizens are idiots.
Minimum sound level of a locomotive horn is also mandated by the FRA. Whether the engineer has control beyond that,I don't personally know, although I'll take Dutchrailnut's post about the control feature in the P42.

Correct the FRA mandates a minimum (mechanical)level the horn can produce and a maximum , this is mechanical limits, not operational limits.

Is so MofE can not send you out with a horn that barely produces sound.
 

Cho Cho Charlie

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On citty of new orleans. Gad, that horn has been blarring quite often. Night too. Is this a new rule or something?
While not in New Orleans, I know what you mean.

For one year, I rented a place about a block from a busy freight line. The tracks run thru the middle of town, and therefore the trains blew their horn every block, block after block, day and night.

While I like trains, I moved about 10 miles away as soon as my lease was up. Even 10 miles away, in the early morning quiet, I can still hear that train horn blasting over and over again, in the distance.
 

Railroad Bill

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On citty of new orleans. Gad, that horn has been blarring quite often. Night too. Is this a new rule or something?
We just completed a ride on the Crescent coming into New Orleans and was surprised that the engineer continuous blew the horn the entire length of the causeway from Slidell until we reached the city. I did not see any track work taking place which would call for that type of signalling?? And of course, there were no crossings in the middle of the Lake Pontchartrain :giggle:

Anyone know why the engineer did this??
 
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Yeah ain't it the truth. Just glad I'm making my next night run from LA to Arizona. Lots of empty space out in the desert with only a few horns until we come back by the highways.

Onboard the Texas Eagle four years ago it was howling horns through all the little towns around Texarkana. We were right up front near the engine, too.

People who love trains as much as we do here tend to try and forget the ugly stuff like hard-to-walk shaking back-and-forth rough rails, and the blasting of horns at night, and the smell of diesel in the morning or anytime you finally get to step out for "a breath of fresh air"

Oh well, asi es la vida de un "foamer" yo creo ?o no?
 
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SarahZ

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I was thrilled when I found this apartment so close to the Amtrak tracks. When we were looking for a new place, I said I wanted to stay in this neighborhood and find something closer to the tracks. Our new place is practically on top of them. :-D I was pretty bummed when we didn't get the place where the train goes, almost literally, right through the backyard. That would have been cool.

It's to the point where I barely notice the train going by, and even when I do, I like it because it tells me what time it is (approximately).

Also, when the 9:50-ish Wolverine is delayed and it comes through at 11:00 PM or later, the engineers tend to keep the horn volume down. I always notice a distinct difference between the horn at 7:30 PM and the horn at 11:00 PM or later.
 

the_traveler

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We just completed a ride on the Crescent coming into New Orleans and was surprised that the engineer continuous blew the horn the entire length of the causeway from Slidell until we reached the city. I did not see any track work taking place which would call for that type of signalling?? And of course, there were no crossings in the middle of the Lake Pontchartrain :giggle:

Anyone know why the engineer did this??
Although there are (of course) no crossings in the middle of the lake, there may be some dumb people walking on the tracks across the bridge as a "shortcut" from one side to the other. That is why trains blow the horn at every bridge or tunnel along the route!
 
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