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EASTERN RAILROAD NEWS
Last Updated 3/15/98 18:32 PM

ATSF C40-8W 904 arrived at Enola, PA on train PIES-4X early this morning. Upon arrival, the unit was discovered to have a burned out traction motor. The unit will be repaired at Enola before being shipped back west. Stay tuned for the trip west… -Kevin Burkholder

The new Conrail (CSXT) SD70MAC's are to be painted identically to the SD80MAC's, but so far only 4130 has been painted. 4131 is currently in the paint shop and 4132 is being set up. Locomotives 4133, 4134, 4135, 4136, 4137, and 4138 are also in various stages of construction. 4130 ceremoniously exited Juniata on Wednesday March 11, in front of several railroad officials and invited media. According to sources at Altoona, the 4130 will not enter service until the 4131 is complete. These units will then be paired and enter regular service. 4132 and 4133 will also wind up being paired initially. - Kevin Burkholder, CRTS E-mail Update

On the 11th, Amtrak DM32's 710, 711 and 713 were released from the paint shop at Altoona. On the 12th, there was a light engine move over CR between Altoona and Harrisburg - I presume that it was comprised of these three units, which are destined for Amtrak's Maintenance Facility, Rensselaer, NY, where they will be placed into Empire Corridor service.

DM32's 710-711-713, trailing ENG 706, were delivered to Rensselaer on Ethan Allen #293 Saturday night. They are painted "Northeast Direct." #710 should go into service out of Rensselaer-NY. -Andy Kirk


Conrail Acquisition to Take Millions of Truck Miles Off Highways in 24 States, Saving Millions in Road Maintenance Costs: Norfolk Southern and CSX detailed reductions of more than 707 million truck miles in two dozen states that could save the states more than $84 million annually in highway maintenance costs if the federal government approves the Conrail transaction.

NS and CSX jointly announced this week that their acquisition of Conrail could lead to annual diversion of truck miles (defined as one large truck moving one mile) and highway maintenance cost savings in each state. (See the table on Page 3 for the impact in each state.) For each state, NS and CSX also gave a county breakdown of annual truck diversions and highway maintenance cost savings.

Federal approval of the Conrail transaction will improve rail efficiency, reducing rail transit times by 24 to 48 hours in some cases, company officials said. Those improvements will encourage manufacturers and other shippers to switch from trucks to railroads, alleviating road congestion, highway maintenance spending and taxpayer costs.

Within three years of the transaction being approved, more than 1.1 million truckloads of freight per year could be diverted from eastern and mid-western highways to the rails, saving 120 million gallons of diesel fuel annually and reducing levels of toxic air emissions, the railroads said.

Annual Truck Diversions and Highway Maintenance Savings

 
State
Diverted Truck Miles
Total Maintenance Savings
Alabama
12.5 million
$1.4 million
Connecticut
12.2 million
$1.5 million
Delaware
2.4 million
Nearly $300,000
Florida
13.3 million
$1.6 million
Georgia
26.5 million
$3.2 million
Illinois
14.7 million
$1.8 million
Indiana
29.7 million
$3.6 million
Iowa
7.6 million
More than $900,000
Kentucky
21.5 million
$2.5 million
Louisiana
1.4 million
More than $400,000
Massachusetts
7.9 million
More than $952,000
Maryland
19 million
$2.3 million
Michigan
9.4 million
$1.1 million
Missouri
10.2 million
$1.2 million
Mississippi
3.2 million
More than $350,000
North Carolina
31.4 million
$3.8 million
New Jersey
25.8 million
$3.1 million
New York
12.6 million
$1.5 million
Ohio
97.6 million
$11.7 million
Pennsylvania
154.3 million
$18.5 million
South Carolina
26.8 million
$3.2 million
Tennessee
54.5 million
$6.5 million
Virginia
97.8 million
$11.7 million
West Virginia
17 million
$2 million
  The Next Step

In May, the Surface Transportation Board's Section of Environmental Analysis (SEA) will issue its Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) on the Conrail transaction. The SEA's Draft Environmental Impact Statement was released last Dec. 12, and Norfolk Southern, CSX and other parties filed comments on Feb. 2. The STB will consider the FEIS in making its decision on the proposed acquisition.

 Implementation Countdown...

* 83 days until STB hears oral arguments, June 4, 1998

* 87 days until STB votes on application, June 8, 1998

* 132 days until STB publishes its written decision, July 23, 1998

* 162 days until the effective date of the STB decision and the Control Date, Aug. 22, 1998

* 172 days until "Day 1," the hypothetical Closing Date for NS planning purposes, Sept. 1, 1998.

Conrail Heritage

The first T-rail track rolled in America reportedly came from the Montour Rolling Mill at Danville, Pa., beginning in 1845 for The Cumberland Valley Railroad, a Conrail predecessor line. The Cumberland Valley rebuilt its entire roadbed with T-rails (so-called because the rail has a T shape) in the late 1840s after experiencing difficulties with its original track, which was strap-iron type laid on longitudinal wooden stringers. -Norfolk Southern

  
New York and Atlantic Railway MP15-AC #155 made its first run this morning in its new livery. The former LIRR engine has been painted a bright green, with beige horizontal stripes. The NYA diamond logo appears on the front and on the cab sides.

After official photos were taken inside the NYA shop in Long Island City, #155 rolled out of the building about 9:30am and posed again for company photographers. On hand were NYA president Fred L. Krebs, and general superintendent Steve E. Sanders. The engine then ran light from Long Island City to Fresh Pond Yard.

NYA #155 will lead the RBB&B circus train on March 16. Power will probably consist of three MP15-AC's. Plans to use NYA GP10 #202 in the consist have been canceled. -Bernie Ente

  
For 60 years, Bethlehem's Frank Casilio & Sons Inc. has been making concrete. Now, the company is going to be taking it, too. The Bethlehem Planning Commission on Thursday approved Casilio's plan to construct a concrete recycling facility on Silvex Road, not far from the intersection of Route 412 and Interstate 78.

Applicant James Casilio said the operation will create three to five new jobs. Now that city approval has been secured, Casilio said he needs air quality and drainage permits from the state Department of Environmental Protection. He hopes to open the plant about two months after the permits are granted.

The facility will be located on a two-acre site at 1965 Silvex Road. The property was formerly a Reading Railroad Co. engine repair facility.

Casilio said the plant will take old concrete from sidewalks, curbs, streets and other sources and recycle it into useful construction materials. The process has four steps: initial crushing, removal of steel reinforcement, final crushing and sorting. About 72 truckloads of concrete a day are expected to arrive at the facility, Casilio said.

The Planning Commission voted to approve the facility only after a contentious debate over noise control between Casilio's attorney, Gary M. Miller, and Samuel Guttman, the city's acting planning director. Bethlehem's zoning ordinance sets a decibel limit on the amount of noise that can be created, and a fine of up to $500 per day can be imposed for violations.

Miller said the concrete recycling plant is designed to minimize noise and meet the ordinance limits, but Guttman told the Planning Commission an independent engineer should be hired to review Casilio's noise control measures before the project is approved.

"I'm not going to take their word for it,'' Guttman said. ''I don't think either the city or the applicant wants to spend a lot of money building a facility that's going to be an enforcement problem.'' Miller argued there is no need for the city to review the noise control plans, because Casilio has already to agreed to shut down the plant if proper noise levels cannot be maintained.

Casilio said noise will be limited by using electricity rather than diesel engines to power the equipment, installing retaining walls along the property lines, using sound absorbent materials in the noisiest parts of the plant and limiting operating hours from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. to noon on Saturday. At one point, Miller questioned whether Guttman had a secret motivation to oppose the plan. Guttman angrily told Miller he was out of line and asked the Planning Commission to table Casilio's plan until next month's meeting.

''My motives are to protect the city. There is no hidden agenda,'' Guttman said. ''I'm trying to do my job.''

Eventually, tempers settled down and commissioners decided against the independent engineer, voting 4-1 to approve the plan. Only Mark Harris, who was appointed to the Planning Commission last month by Mayor Don Cunningham, voted against the project.

The Planning Commission placed several conditions on its approval, including the stipulation that city engineer Steven DeSalva review construction plans for the noise retaining wall.

Casilio said the plant will be the Lehigh Valley's first permanent concrete recycling operation. Another local concrete contractor, A.J. Trunzo & Sons Inc., has operated a portable concrete recycling machine on Route 512 in East Allen Township for about a year. Company Vice President Anthony Trunzo said the machine is taken directly to job sites, where concrete can be crushed and used in other aspects of construction. -By CHRISTIAN D. BERG Of The Morning Call via Carl Perelman

  
LONDON, March 13th, 1998 -- APL, which this month enters the container trade between Northern Europe and North America with two sailings per week, will offer exporters and importers a combination of broad North American market reach and Internet-based information support that will raise service standards in the trans-Atlantic marketplace.

At the same time, the 150-year-old company, long a force in the trans-Pacific market, closes the final east-west gap in its service network and becomes a global service provider. "APL is now able to support the transportation and logistics needs of global manufacturers and retailers in virtually any market," said Keith A. Mackie, APL's vice president for trans-Atlantic services. He said the start-up of the trans-Atlantic service was facilitated by APL's merger last November with Neptune Orient Lines, which had a presence in that trade. APL -- which is the brand name for all of the combined group's container operations -- also serves the Asia-Europe, Asia-Latin America, intra-Asia, Australia, North-South America, and North American double-stack rail markets, in addition to the trans-Pacific and trans-Atlantic trades.

Mackie said APL plans to add a third weekly trans-Atlantic service by year-end, in concert with its alliance partners. "We are committed to providing a competitive service," he said. He noted that APL will be entering the market as an independent carrier offering a premier service.

North American Market Reach

APL's sailings to and from Antwerp, Bremerhaven, Thamesport and Le Havre will connect at North American East and Gulf Coast ports directly with the company's proprietary double-stack rail system. This intermodal system is the largest in the world, said Stephen Leong, APL's vice president and managing director for Europe.

"The APL 'stacktrain' system offers nearly 400 rail departures per week, meaning exporters and importers have fast, frequent connections to virtually all key commercial and manufacturing centers in North America," he said. And within Europe and the U.K., inland transport can be arranged for customers by expert staff at full-service APL offices in Antwerp, Bremen, Hamburg, Le Havre, London, and Rotterdam, and by APL's agency personnel across Europe.

Double-stack rail transport, introduced by APL in 1984, has revolutionized the way containerized freight is moved in North America. It utilizes fuel-efficient rail cars upon which containers are stacked in two tiers. The equipment is controlled by APL itself, rather than by the railroads, helping to ensure availability and schedule integrity, and providing single-party oversight of the complete movement.

Unique Information Support

Another element of the trans-Atlantic service that makes it unique is the high level of information support made available to customers, whether via telephone contact, through electronic data interchange, or, most recently, by means of the Internet. Similarly, a high level of customer service in the areas of logistics arrangements, documentation, billing and other inquiries is available through any of APL's 37 full-service offices and agency offices that are located in 18 European countries. In North America, support is provided through customer service centers that are noted for their responsiveness.

APL's award-winning Internet website, offering on-line booking, tracing, documentation review and other transactional capabilities, is located at http://www.apl.com . The Internet-based tracing system allows customers, on a 24-hour basis, to access current reports on the location or the customs status or financial status of any APL shipment, whether at sea or transit within the North American "stacktrain" network. It also monitors shipments in transit between Europe and Asia, and in all the company's other trade lanes.

"Because of the growing requirement of retailers and manufacturers to monitor the status of their shipments in order to more efficiently manage their supply-chain activities," said Mackie, "we have placed great emphasis on providing easy-to-use, accurate information."

Mackie added that all APL offices and agency representatives in Europe are connected with the global APL telecommunications system, so they can provide up-to-the-moment information for customers who prefer personal contact

To using the Internet. He also noted that the company's information-intensive consolidation unit, ACS, is active in Europe and other markets, helping customers with complex multi-country sourcing and consolidation needs.

Other Service Details

APL's new trans-Atlantic container service, offered through a vessel-sharing alliance with Lykes Lines, includes a weekly sailing linking Antwerp, Bremerhaven, Thamesport and Le Havre with the North Atlantic ports of Norfolk, New York and Halifax, and a second weekly sailing linking the same European gateways with the South Atlantic ports of Charleston, Miami, Houston and New Orleans. Connecting-carrier services to other European markets -- including Scandinavia, Eastern Europe and the Iberian Peninsula -- are available, noted Leong.

Transit times will be competitive. For example, service from New York to Antwerp will be just nine days. An intermodal movement from Chicago to Antwerp would be 12 days, with the shipment fully managed by APL. Also, schedules have been developed to enhance the competitiveness of shippers, said Mackie; the regular departure from New York on Mondays, for example, allows exporters to load freight during the weekend or even late on the day of sailing.

Because nine of the 10 containerships in the new service will be U.S.-flag vessels, APL will be able to pursue U.S. preference and military cargoes in the trans-Atlantic trades, as it does in the Pacific.

APL provides container transportation and logistics services through an integrated network combining high-quality intermodal services with state-of-the-art information technology. NOL is a global transportation company with diverse transport-related activities, but shipping as its core business. - APL, CRTS E-mail Update

  
New units delivered:

Dash9-44CW: 2592 delivered 27-02; 2600 delivered 27-02; 2601 delivered 01-03; 2602 delivered 07-03

Units retired:

2106-2118-3560-3568 on 27-02; 3514 on 09-03

Units retired & moved to the VIA shop facility located at Mimico Ont. - Sold to CANAC

3510-3516-3517-3519-3560-3566-3569-3572-3573-3574-3577-3579-3588-2103-2106-2107-2108-2112-2118

There are 3 HR616s left: 2100, 2113, 2116. - Roman Hawryluk

  
Surface Transportation Board (Board) Chairman Linda J. Morgan today provided details regarding the oral argument to be held on June 4, 1998, in the case concerning the proposed CSX-Norfolk Southern-Conrail railroad merger [FOOTNOTE 1: CSX Corporation and CSX Transportation, Inc. are referred to collectively as CSX, Norfolk Southern Corporation, and Norfolk Southern Railway Company are referred to collectively as NS, Conrail Inc. and Consolidated Rail Corporation are referred to collectively as Conrail. The proceeding is entitled CSX Corporation and CSX Transportation, Inc., Norfolk Southern Corporation and Norfolk Southern Railway Company--Control and Operating Leases/Agreements--Conrail Inc. and Consolidated Rail Corporation, STB Finance Docket No. 33388.], and announced a decision requesting information from parties to the proceeding wishing to participate.

Oral argument before the Board will begin at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 4, 1998, in the Hearing Room, Room 760, 7th Floor, Surface Transportation Board, 1925 K Street, N.W. (Mercury Building), in Washington, D.C. The Board anticipates that the amount of time set for oral argument will be five hours. Of that time, the primary applicants, CSX, NS, and onrail, will be allotted two hours to be shared among them. The remaining three hours will be allotted to all other participants in

The merger case. The Board noted that the five hours time--which is comparable to the amount set for oral argument in the most recent major rail merger case, that of the Union Pacific and Southern Pacific railroads in 1996--is necessary in light of the voluminous public record and the large number of parties actively involved in the case.

Parties interested in participating in the oral argument must indicate:

(1)the issue or issues they will address; (2) whether they support or oppose the primary application [FOOTNOTE 2: The primary application also includes, for example, requests by the primary applicants for rail line abandonment and new line construction.], the responsive applications [FOOTNOTE 3: Applications by parties, other than the primary applicants, seeking to lessen perceived anti-competitive effects through trackage rights, etc.], or the various requests for conditions [FOOTNOTE 4: To be applied to the merger by the Board, should it approve the transaction.]; and (3) how much speaking time they require. Parties must provide this information by letter (an original and 25 copies) to the Board's Office of the Secretary no later than Friday, April 10, 1998, at the following address:

Case Control Unit
Office of the Secretary
Surface Transportation Board
1925 K St., NW
Washington, DC 20423-0001
  Re: STB Finance Docket No. 33388 Oral Argument

After the Board receives requests for participation and analyzes them, it will issue a decision establishing a precise oral argument schedule and specifying any particular issues the Board wants participants to address within their oral presentations. Parties are encouraged to consolidate and coordinate their presentations. While the public is invited to attend the oral argument, no public participation will be allowed, except for those parties whose formal requests to present oral arguments have been granted and scheduled for presentation before the Board. The Board added that, because Hearing Room seating space is limited, it will provide additional seating in an overflow room, the Brick Room, on the Mercury Building's first floor, that will be linked to the Hearing Room by a live, closed-circuit telecast of the entire oral argument.

Members of the media wishing to observe the oral argument in the Hearing Room will be advised--through a Board news release to be issued later--of requirements that must be met for their attendance.

The Board provided details about the June 4 oral argument and requested information from interested parties in Decision No. 70 issued to the public today, March 12, 1998, in STB Finance Docket No. 33388. -STB, CRTS E-mail Update

  
NORFOLK, VA -- Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC) today announced that Robert E. Huffman, general manager intermodal operations for Conrail, will join Norfolk Southern in a similar capacity effective March 23.

Huffman will be named to the position of senior assistant vice president intermodal operations, based at Norfolk.

He previously served in a number of Conrail operating positions, including general superintendent intermodal operations, division superintendent, terminal superintendent and trainmaster.

Norfolk Southern Corporation also announced that Hugh J. Kiley, vice president service design and planning for Conrail, will join Norfolk Southern effective March 16.

Kiley will be named to the position of assistant vice president transportation services, based at Atlanta, and will be responsible for service design, planning and support. He will report to the vice president - transportation and mechanical.

Kiley has served as assistant vice president performance and process management and assistant vice president program management at Conrail. He was general manager of Conrail's National Customer Service Center from 1990 to 1994 and before that held various transportation positions including assistant division general manager and division superintendent. He is a graduate of the University of Rhode Island with a bachelor's degree in administration.

Gregory R. Comstock, assistant vice president service design and network for Conrail, will join Norfolk Southern effective March 16.

Comstock will be named to the position of assistant general manager, based at Atlanta, and will be responsible for regional operations. He will report to the general manager - western region. Prior to his current position, Comstock served as a general manager, division superintendent, terminal superintendent, trainmaster and in various other operating positions with Conrail. -Norfolk Southern

  
WASHINGTON, March 5, 1998 - Both carload and intermodal freight were off in the U.S. but up in Canada during February, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported today.

 

"Weather particularly in the West during the latter part of the month was an important factor in the decline in U.S. rail freight traffic during the month," said AAR Senior Assistant Vice President Craig F. Rockey. "Continued rain and mudslides have caused problems in Southern California while heavy winds and snow in the Powder River Basin hurt coal traffic during the final week of the month."

In comparison with February 1997, U.S. carloadings were off 0.8 percent while intermodal volume declined 1.1 percent. Five of seven major commodity groups were off for the month, with agricultural products down 5.5 percent, chemicals and coal both down 1.7 percent, forest products off 1.4 percent and metallic ores down 0.4 percent. Increases were reported in loadings of motor vehicles and parts, up 12.2 percent, and nonmetallic minerals, up 1.1 percent.

Mr. Rockey attributed the decline in coal loadings both to mild winters in much of the country decreasing demand for coal and to severe weather during the last week of February which curtailed loadings. The gains in automotive traffic reflect at least partly recent service initiatives by railroads.

For just the week ended February 28, the AAR reported U.S. carload volume to 340,051, down 3.4 percent from the corresponding week last year, with loadings up 0.8 percent in the East but down 7.6 percent in the West. Intermodal volume totaled 165,731 trailers and containers, up 0.1 percent from last year. Total volume was estimated at 26.5 billion ton-miles, down 2.6 percent.

For the eight weeks ended February 28, the AAR reported the following U.S. cumulative totals: 2,776,682 carloads, up 3.1 percent from last year; 1,299,944 trailers and containers, up 1.0 percent; and total volume of 217.4 billion ton-miles, up 3.8 percent from 1997's first eight weeks.

Railroads reporting to AAR account for nearly 93 percent of U.S. carload freight and 98 percent of rail intermodal volume. Railroads provide about 40 percent of the nation's intercity freight transportation, more than any other mode, and rail traffic figures are regarded as an important economic indicator.

Canadian railroads reported gain in both carload and intermodal volume during February, with carload freight up 2.9 percent and intermodal volume gaining 6.2 percent. For just the week ended February 28, the AAR reported that Canada's two national railroads loaded 55,860 carloads, down 2.4 percent from the comparable 1997 week, and 26,540 trailers and containers, up 9.2 percent from last year.

Cumulative volume for the first 8 weeks of 1998 on the Canadian railroads totaled 435,923 carloads, up 5.8 percent from last year, and 194,307 trailers and containers, up 2.5 percent from last year.

Combined cumulative volume for 8 weeks of 1998 on 19 reporting U.S. and Canadian railroads totaled 3,212,605 carloads, up 3.4 percent from last year's first 8 weeks, and 1,494,251 trailers and containers, up 1.2 percent from last year.

AAR is the world's leading railroad policy, research and technology organization focusing on increasing the safety and productivity of rail carriers.



Please check this location daily, as new information will be posted, as it becomes available. If you have news to report or information regarding railroads in the Eastern United States, please send e-mail to Kevin Burkholder at KBurkholder@psghs.edu

 

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