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metsfan

Letter from NJT VP

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A Letter to Our Rail Customers from Vice President, Rail Operations, Bill Duggan

May 6, 2009

 

Dear Customer,

 

 

I want to personally apologize for the unusual delays many of you experienced over the last several days, leaving many of you understandably frustrated. Given last week’s brush fire and electrical problem on the Northeast Corridor, followed by a disabled train in the tunnel on Monday morning and last night’s signal failure—combined with bad weather—I know it’s been a tough commute to work and home.

 

*image left out due to size*

 

We are frustrated with our performance as well, and we’re working hard to prevent these issues from recurring. The train that became disabled on Monday morning should never have left the rail yard. We have addressed this with management personnel to ensure that every train is mechanically prepared for the trip.

The electrical problem last week was an unfortunate anomaly. An Amtrak high-voltage transmission line fell onto the westbound tracks near Metuchen Station, disrupting service on the Northeast Corridor throughout the afternoon and evening peak period on Thursday, April 30. Amtrak dispatched electrical crews to the scene, who assessed the damage and were able to make the necessary repairs.

 

 

Also last week, a brush fire was reported around 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 28, just outside the mouth of the tunnel. Heat, high winds and dry weather conspired to make ideal conditions for the fire to spread, and it was necessary to temporarily suspend rail service due to the fire’s proximity to the tracks. The brush fire affected trains throughout the afternoon and evening peak period.

 

Last night’s signal problem near Newark Penn Station has been isolated, and Amtrak crews are making repairs that should minimize further incidents. To help you understand what happened, yesterday at about 3:30 p.m., Amtrak reported signal problems that prevented dispatchers from moving trains using the illuminated signals on the tracks. This meant that all trains through the affected area were required to stop at each signal and request verbal permission to proceed. As you can imagine, this was a labor-intensive, time-consuming process that significantly limited our operations—resulting in the major delays and standing-room-only conditions that many of you experienced firsthand.

 

We know that we need to do better. I want you to know that we are committed to giving you an on-time train every day, and we’ll redouble our efforts to meet yourexpectations. When events do happen beyond our control, know that you can get the best information we have available through My Transit alerts and njtransit.com, as well as through local media channels.

 

 

duggansig.jpg

 

Sincerely,

William B. Duggan

-----------------------------------------------

 

Nice to know they're thinkin' of us! :cool:

 

- (A)

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*Sighs, it's about time. Someone needs to nudge Bombardier to improve their products as well as Amtrak to install constant tension catenary.

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bleh...another letter to make everyone feel good...more doing less talking.

 

Agree, however, they kinda are. The PA has been honking its own horn about the much delayed PA5 cars (they rock but a year+ late?), while (NJT) quietly is gearing up to provide trains per hour bordering on "gilded age" frequency. The number of EMU, locomotives, pax cars by 2014 will begin to rival anything previously seen for decades, especially in combination with amtrak tph.

 

I've been doing some numbers and some observations of where i see crews and what work they are doing.... We really are on the verge of a huge increase in capacity.

 

They are also rebuilding trenton, metropark, newark penn, expanding and rebuilding nyp, and i've seen documents about rebuilding & modernizing other stations as well. Add to this the re-activation of lines long dormant, and you can see that we are on the road to a good place. :tup: :P

 

- A

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I beginning to have a bad impression on Bombardier b/c of the HHP-8s. I think that the Arrow IVs should be built by Alstom or Siemens instead.

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I know their doing what they need to do but letters like these are silly.

 

 

 

I beginning to have a bad impression on Bombardier b/c of the HHP-8s. I think that the Arrow IVs should be built by Alstom or Siemens instead.

 

Whats your problem with the HHP's you don't run them. I don't but I talk to people that do, and they seem to have no problems with them other than the visibility issue, I have found that many of them don't like the Acela however. Do you want me to bring out all the Alstom problems?

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HHP8 are wonderful for longer heavier trains like the crescent, silver service etc, but for regionals, keystone vermonter, they should remain aem-7 where possible.

 

- A

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I beginning to have a bad impression on Bombardier b/c of the HHP-8s. I think that the Arrow IVs should be built by Alstom or Siemens instead.

 

I for one do not want more ALSTOM products in NJ. I have had 1 PL42AC breakdown on me already.

 

If not Bombardier, then KHI should make the Arrow IV.

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I like the HHP-8s' capabilities, but sometimes I can't help it but to compare them to the faulty M7s. The products produced by KHI are only expected to last for 20 yrs or less such as each Shinkansen fleet. Also, Kawasaki's trains are quite loud such as the R142A, R143, and R160B. As for the PL42ACs, GM and Vossloh AG also shares the blame since they designed and built most them. If not Alstom, then maybe Siemens? Anybody?

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Ken,

 

Only 1? Your lucky! I will admit though they are getting better. But lets talk about another great Alstom product the Comet V's they came with some great bugs...

 

The HHP's have been fine for all trains but when the 46a's do come(when ever they get around to purchasing them) I expect will see the HHP's stick with LD's or Longer NER trains. The HHP's do not run with the keystones because there seem to be bugs with it and the cab car though they can do it and there are photos floating around. Frankly I think the AEM7's should be kept on Keystones. Anyway back on transit I would not mind if Siemens was to build the IV's as long as its not ROTEM I'll be happy at this point.

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How bad is ROTEM? Are they even delivering the Silverliner Vs yet?

 

Not good, last I heard it was being pushed back even further. The ROTEM reputation is poor worldwide, maybe they can change it when they finally deliver something in the US..time will tell.

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Not good, last I heard it was being pushed back even further. The ROTEM reputation is poor worldwide, maybe they can change it when they finally deliver something in the US..time will tell.

 

For one thing, Hyundai isn't that bad of a car brand. Also ROTEM manufactured the K-Stock for the Hong Kong MTR airport express and they fly on the tracks so efficiently with fine suspension.

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A car and a rail car are tow different things...that was about the worst comparison you could make. A rail car has to stand up to different criteria then an automobile.

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My mom's co-worker had to scrap her car after a low speed accident caused her hyundai's frame to buckle. They are not good cars. We've owned 2 kias, had a rental kia for 3 weeks, and test drove 3 hyundai's. :tdown:

 

I want Bomb+GE or Bomb+Alstom for (NJT). Preferably Bomb+GE. :cool:

 

- A

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If GE shares the load, they should build the Arrow IVs like how they build their freight locos, not how they built the Arrow IIs or rebuilt the last R32s and R38s. If Bombardier builds them, they should not have flat wheel or breakdown issues for the first 5 years of their run. My preference is actually Siemens Velaro, which built the most reliable high speed train fleet presently.

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I will say I have enjoyed many rides on the ICE 3 and its siblings. I do think Siemens makes a good product, but they had a problems this past year with cracked axles. BTW I am one of those people who would have loved to have seen ICE3's or the Velaro variant in the US instead of the Acela but the problem is they are to light to operate here:( not to mention the crash standards would probably have to be improved.

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Kaback9, I believe it's the ICE3 that has been having the axle problems b/c their axles are all uncovered. The ICE 3s were also built by Adtranz, Bombardier, and Alstom, which justifies that these other manufacturers also share the blame. However, the Siemens variants (only Siemens Velaro) don't have any noticeable problems like the ones in China and Spain.

 

Regarding FRA regulations, I think that the ICE3 and Siemens Velaro trainsets meet the standards and are much heavier than those TGV trains made by Alstom. I remember the ICE 1s being tested on the NEC in the early 90s and the tests were quite positive.

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Kaback9, I believe it's the ICE3 that has been having the axle problems b/c their axles are all uncovered. The ICE 3s were also built by Adtranz, Bombardier, and Alstom, which justifies that these other manufacturers also share the blame. However, the Siemens variants (only Siemens Velaro) don't have any noticeable problems like the ones in China and Spain.

 

Regarding FRA regulations, I think that the ICE3 and Siemens Velaro trainsets meet the standards and are much heavier than those TGV trains made by Alstom. I remember the ICE 1s being tested on the NEC in the early 90s and the tests were quite positive.

 

The ICE set had to get an FRA waiver to operate in the US. I agree they share blame but its a Siemens design they get the brunt of it. Its not only weight issue but rather crash requirements. I rode the ICE set in the US and enjoyed it.

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My take on service improvements as far as new EMU is based on the P40's (NJT) is using. I'm not sure if they are run every day, but i do know that when ACES isn't running they are at least at MMC. Very reliable.

 

Speaking of old EMU i saw 3 PRR silverliners hooked to a reading silverliner at TTC earlier. No camera today, too rainy.

 

- A

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The P40's are used during the week, not every week but they are used, they spend time on the RVL or on the ACL.

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Let's see how long they last. I'm shooting for at least 15 years.

 

They got legs on them. They could still be rebuilt into dual power diesel/cat units by brookfield or wabco.

 

- A

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