"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance

 and a people who mean to be their own governors

 must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

Saturday, July 22, 2006

There’s Got To Be A Better Way

Here’s one way to determine whether a bi-level passenger train will actually fit within the confines of existing infrastructure – run one down the track and see if it crashes into anything.

On June 8, the first of New Jersey Transit’s planned fleet of 231 bilevel trains, which cost about $1.9 million each, slipped out on a midnight test run to New York.

Built taller and wider than traditional suburban commuter trains, the ‘double-decker’ had difficulty passing through one of the two tunnels heading into Pennsylvania Station, tearing down two signals as it chugged past the west end of track 5.

A spokesman for New Jersey Transit, Dan Stessel, said that the train that tore down the signals suffered only “minor cosmetic damages.’’

He said that no passengers were on board that night, and that the train’s engineer and its conductors were not injured.



5 Comments:

At 7:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

NJT already knew they were going to be tight. That is why they were not able to order a more off the shelf type model, like they have on the LIRR.

However, some of the signals in the very old tunnel are very close and some do stick out. The media is making a much bigger deal out of this than is necessary. No doubt, some signals will have to be moved, but that is why they are TESTING them now.

 
At 7:14 AM, Blogger joated said...

Sure, but the trucking companies that know a load may be tight usually send out a test car with a flag erected on the bumber. If the flag hits the overpass, they know the cleaerance isn't right. It's a whole lot cheaper than banging up their cargo.

 
At 8:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

State workers at their best.

 
At 9:29 AM, Blogger lawhawk said...

I wrote about this yesterday, but here's a few other observations. When the Port Authority rebuilt the tunnel to the WTC from NJ after 9/11, they actually built a mockup to run the length of the tunnel to make sure there were no obstructions.

That way they wouldn't hit any equipment, the tunnel geometry was sound, and no train equipment would be damaged in the process.

The problems with this incident is that Amtrak had no oversight over the contractor who installed the equipment, Amtrak didn't inform NJTransit of the changes, and then NJTransit didn't check for themselves that all equipment was out of the way.

Doesn't the NYT think there's a story in that?

 
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