Amtrak to Test GE Locomotives for Cascades Route

The Federal Railroad Administration is considering and taking comments on Amtrak's request for a waiver that will allow the company to use General Electric P32-8 and P40/42 locomotives on Talgo trains operating the Cascades Service route between Vancouver, British Columbia and Portland, Ore. Amtrak now operates Talgo trains -– articulating trains built in Spain that have a "tilt" feature allowing for safe travel at higher speeds around curves -– on BNSF tracks at speeds as high as 79 mph and a cant deficiency up to 6 inches.

Cant deficiency (explained here on Wikipedia and here by Interface Journal) is a measure of the centrifugal force exerted to the outside, more elevated rail as a train rounds a curve. The GE locomotives were static lean tested in 1991 and 1993, respectively, and meet the requirements of 49 CFR 213.57, Elevation in Curves, for 4 inches cant deficiency, and the tests indicated a maximum safe cant deficiency operation of up to 10 inches for the P40/42 locomotive and 8 inches for the P32-8, FRA said in its Federal Register notice last Friday. Amtrak recently demonstrated and received approval for 5 inch cant deficiency operation of these GE locomotives on its Northeast Corridor and Harrisburg, Pa. routes, according to the notice.

Amtrak plans to conduct two end-to-end test runs with Talgo trains between Portland and Blaine, Wash. to confirm results obtained during recent dynamic testing and to demonstrate safe dynamic performance of the locomotives at speeds in curves that generate up to 6 inches of cant deficiency; Amtrak has submitted a test plan for FRA approval that uses accelerometers on each locomotive to measure performance over the entire route at timetable speeds, FRA said.

Interested parties have 45 to submit written views, data, or comments. FRA said no public hearing is planned. The Washington State Department of Transportation's page on Talgo trains is available here.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Comply with OSHA’s Electronic Recordkeeping Requirements

    Collect relevant incident data and generate accurate OSHA 300, 300A, and 301 regulatory reports, including 300A CSV files for easy electronic submission to OSHA.

  • Complete Online Safety Training Courses

    Deliver state-of-the art, online safety training courses to your organization with IndustrySafe Training Management Software. Generate reports to track training compliance and automatically notify learners of upcoming or overdue classes.

  • Easy to Use Safety Inspection App

    Conduct inspections on the go with IndustrySafe’s mobile app. Complete safety audits at job sites and remote locations—with or without web access.

  • Track Key Safety Performance Indicators

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations to easily track safety KPIs and metrics. Gain increased visibility into your business’ operations and safety data.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus