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LIengineerBob

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  1. Yes, all LIRR train and engine service employees are subject to the Hours of Service Act. The reason for that is there is simply no room to lay-up sufficient equipment to provide the necessary service requirements, and the required crews to operate the trains. Keep in mind at Massepequa Park, there is no place to store equiptment....you just change ends in the interlocking on the main track. The job that goes to Oyster Bay was one of the BEST jobs to own at the time (all old-timers back then).....sadly, it is no longer like that during the week.....only on weekends now!! The LIRR hasn't used bed checks since the 1960's at least. There hasn't been "double ended" jobs since then also. Nearly all of the "double ended" jobs where you got a bed check were freight jobs. Surprisingly, that train out of Jamaica gets quite a few passengers, especially on the weekends after the partiers decide to go home. It's the last eastbound train out that way until around 8 in the morning. The HOS law has a big part to do with how the crews are scheduled, and that home terminal rule comes into play too. Plus, you would have to be paid for the time you were resting.......so there would be no savings.....just additional overtime costs. You would need to look in the collectors assignment portion of the crew book to find them. Not all trains operate with collectors....don't confuse them with conductors and assistant conductors (brakemen). An IPMA is when you must be available for work and are subject to call up to 8 hours after that time. So if your IPMA is 1201am, you could theoretically be called as late as 801am for work. At 802am you could refuse the work (or not answer the phone!)and get paid for 8 hours. That's called a guarantee. It rarely happens anymore. On the LIRR, your call time is 3 hours before the report time of the job, unless it is east of Speonk, then it is 4 hours. The LIRR does not specify where you can or cannot live. If you decide to live in Florida, that's your choice, you are still subject to the prescribed call times.
  2. Pretty much the same routine today. There are overtime jobs, short jobs and everything in between. The home terminal rule is why the last train of nearly every run returns to it's starting location. If the job doesn't operate a train back to the originating terminal, the crew is paid to deadhead back to the originating terminal.
  3. Yes, at every terminal where trains are layed over, there are coach cleaners, and other M of E employees to maintain and inspect the equipment. There may be only one or two cleaners out in the Eastern terminals, but they are there.....usually at night to clean the equipment that sits in the various eastern yards overnight so the morning commuters have a clean ride into work.
  4. No you don't need to know someone. That is basically urban myth. It might have been true many eons ago, but no longer is. I knew no one when I hired out in 1988.....just sent a letter (yes, a letter you had to write and mail with a stamp!!) expressing my interest in working for the LIRR. All you need to do is keep your eye on the MTA web-site for job postings and apply for one or any that you think you might be qualified for. It's a lot like entering the lottery...you got to be in it to win it! Keep in mind, right now, the LIRR, and most likely the entire MTA in general (except for management positions :confused:......they can never seem to have enough of those!!) is not doing much hiring.
  5. I started on the LIRR in 1988 as a Car Appearance Maintainer or CAM (politically correct name for a coach cleaner). I have been an engineer since 1991. Your job as a coach cleaner is exactly what the job title says......to maintain the appearance of the INTERIOR of the care....both diesel and electric cars. To be a little more specific, you will be required to be able to sweep and mop the cars. Lift buckets of water, soaps, cleaners onto the cars from ground level. Carry full garbage bags considerable distances though busy rail yards to deposit into dumpsters. Perform heavy duty scrubbing of the interiors. And you might also want to have a strong stomach, because some of the clean ups you'll do involve some pretty nasty and horrific things (use your imagination)....people can be animals sometimes. During the winter months, you'll be required to do snow removal and other bad weather duties within the confines of the yard. The only item I wouldn't worry about on the official job description is the icing of cars....they stopped doing that in the 1960's. I don't know why it is even still listed there! Your work locations can be anywhere from West Side Yard to Montauk. As you gain seniority you'll be able to pick better and better jobs. Be prepared to work weekends, holidays and all weird hours. Welcome to the real world of railroading....not the fantasy world alot of buffs like to make up. The job can be used to get in the door and allow you to move on to other positions as you see fit. Normally, CAMS become car inspectors, but you are free to apply to any job the LIRR has to offer, as long as your qualified for the job.
  6. Where does the SIRT connect to any other railroad? If the North Shore line would ever get rebuilt (they will put men on Mars before that is done), there would be a remote possibility of a connection to the outside world. Right now, the SIRT is a totally land locked railroad. Why do you think the BL20's were sent over on barges and loaded onto trucks to get to Clifton. The LIRR uses EMD MP15ac's and EMD SW1001's for work train, change of engines/rescue/maintainance of way service. Both of those locos are tired and beat to hell. There have been several RFP's issued for new work service locos for the LIRR, but the current and on-going "financial difficulties" being reported by the MTA have put an end to that several times now. I believe the restrictions on the BL20's in the ferry terminal are due to the ongoing, never ending construction at the terminal with the rebuilding of the bus ramps. I can't see there being any height problems once the temporary ceilings/barriers are removed. The tight curves might be another story though. What I never understood is why the SIRT needed four locomotives. 95% of the time, they are sitting in Clifton yard. I think two would been sufficient.
  7. There are two cabooses on the SIRT (or SIRR...whatever you want to call it!!) . One was transferred from the LIRR (where it originally came from the Illinois Central), the other one, I believe...from the best I can tell through my reference is of Baltimore and Ohio heritage (it would make sense). They use them on work trains when shoving movements have to be made, as a safe place for the conductor to stand. And as for the only "real" railroad equipment on Staten Island...those few pieces of SIRT equipment aren't the only ones. Don't forget about the operations out in Howland Hook and Arlington Yard. Most of the times there is at least one NYCT (New York Container Terminal....NOT New York City Transit!!) GP-38's sitting there, along with a plethora of cars for containers and trash.
  8. I just signed up to the forum!! Others might now me from my screen name on other transit related forums....so I decided to join in here too. I have a life long family history of working for MTA agencies, and their predecessors. I currently am an engineer for the LIRR (23 years), my father is a retired bus operator for the NYCTA for 28 years, my grandfather and great uncles worked for the SIRT and the B&O before the MTA took over ops of the SIRT. My interests are of course, commuter railroads, but the reason I joined is after my father retirement, I fell out of contact with the goings on in the world of TA buses ( iwas a bus fanatic as a kid, and the bus bug has bitten again)......so I came here to learn about all the new goings on. I also model in HO scale, all sorts of commuter railroads, subway and when I can find them, bus models. Glad to be a member!!
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