September 1, 2015

Advocates hope to restore rail service cut by Katrina

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Transportation advocates are hoping to convince Amtrak to restore rail service on the Gulf Coast between New Orleans and Florida that has been dormant since Hurricane Katrina 10 years ago.  Trains on Amtrak’s Sunset Limited route, which used to run between Los Angeles and Orlando, have ended in New Orleans since the 2005 storm, which [...]

Schumer: use Sandy relief funds to fix NYC rail tunnels

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Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) is urging the federal government to use $550 million worth of leftover Hurricane Sandy relief money to fix Amtrak and commuter rail tunnels in New York City that were damaged during the storm.  Problems with rail tunnels in the New York City area have emerged as a political issue as New Jersey Gov. [...]

BNSF: court order could disrupt economy

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LA CROSSE, Wis. — BNSF Railway says a temporary court injunction against use of its new track through the La Crosse River marsh would damage the railroad and disrupt the economy of the northern part of the country. In documents filed this week, attorneys for BNSF challenge an order issued earlier this month by La [...]

Former General Chairperson Robert Swert dies

Retired former General Chairperson Robert E. Swert, 89, of Port Charlotte, Fla. and formerly of West Chester, Pa. died August 20, 2015, in Port Charlotte. After serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps, Swert hired out as a brakeman with the New York Central Railroad. Swert began his rail career as a member of the [...]

Charlotte streetcar ridership higher than expected

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Average weekday ridership along the Charlotte Area Transit System’s (CATS) new streetcar line came in at 1,507 passengers, which was 67 percent higher than expected for the first two weeks of operations, agency officials announced Tuesday. Known as the CityLYNX Gold Line, the streetcar route was initially estimated to facilitate 900 passenger trips per month.  [...]

Fire crews take the train

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With thick smoke impeding visibility and foiling aircraft operations over the past couple of days, BNSF Railway trains have been shuttling fire crews and heavy equipment into the Sheep Fire at the southern edge of Glacier National Park. There firefighters have been working to build containment lines during a lull in fire activity. Fire management [...]

Phoenix voters OK tax to fund light-rail

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Phoenix-area voters on Tuesday approved a comprehensive transportation plan that would significantly increase public spending on light-rail and other transit projects, city officials announced yesterday. According to unofficial results, nearly 55 percent of voters approved the measure known as Transportation 2050.  Listed on the ballot as Proposition 104, the plan calls for a 0.7 percent [...]

Senators urge TSA to implement rail security measures

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Senators urge TSA to immediately complete measures required in 2007 legislation.  “Tens of millions of riders use our country’s public transportation and passenger rail systems every day, and these networks serve as the backbone of economic activity throughout the country…While aviation security is a vital focus of the TSA, your agency also has a critical [...]

Corridor chosen for proposed Texas high-speed rail

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The Federal Railroad Administration has decided on a preferred route for the proposed high-speed rail that would run from Houston to Dallas and through the eastern counties of the Texas Brazos Valley. The line approved for the proposed train would get people from Houston to Dallas in 90 minutes. It cuts right through Grimes, Madison [...]

FRA issues advisory on ballast defects

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FRA is issuing this safety advisory to emphasize the importance of timely repairing ballast defects and conditions on main tracks. FRA notes that ballast defects and ballast conditions that are not repaired in a timely manner can lead to future defects. FRA believes it is important for track inspectors to be aware that ballast defects [...]