Sunday, December 16, 2012

Expensive trains scrapped

From the Daily News:

The state announced that it has sold four sets of rusting trains to scrap dealers — an embarrassing end for a once-grand plan to create high-speed rail service between Manhattan and Albany.

The sale of the trains and spare parts netted a mere $420,000, a far cry from the tens of millions of dollars taxpayers sank into the doomed project.

The trains were among seven retired Turboliners former Gov. George Pataki’s administration acquired from Amtrak in 1998.

Each of the trains consisted of two engines and three passenger cars — and were supposed to be refurbished for high-speed use.

But after spending $70 million on the project, the state could only get three of the seven to run — and then only sporadically.

They were plagued with problems, from fires to poor air conditioning.
By 2002 the project was halted and Amtrak towed the three barely working trains to a rail yard in Delaware.

The remaining four have been rusting away in a rail yard outside of Schenectady, costing taxpayers $150,000 a year just in storage costs.

In June, a frustrated Gov. Cuomo announced the state would finally rid itself of the trains, even auctioning them off for scrap if necessary.

And that’s exactly what happened.


Anonymous said...

"$150,000 a year just in storage costs"

What a sweetheart deal that was !

Anything government gets involved on winds up costing more. It's not their money so who cares !

Anonymous said...

Better off !!
My Uncle worked for Amtrak and knew these $$$ shitboxes (as he called them) well.

These were some of the worst crap in engineering history.
These French designed copy's made by Rohr Ca were so bad Amtrak needed two turbine rated jet mechanics on board on every trip plus 1 electromotive on standby.
They used 10X more jet fuel to Albany then a Boeing 747 to California, turbine fires, electrical fires, French made metric parts and gears.
The refurbs used the same design with French parts including the bum engines and drivetrain
The French scrapped there turbine Electromotive's decades ago.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you have some serious train knowledge.

Feel free to post about the Amtrak acela. Even as a part time observer it's infuriating. Amtrak is totally mismanaged and should be ended. They would screw up a wet dream.

Anonymous said...

Amtrak would hire French helicopter company's AGAIN to design trains to run on US tracks if given the chance.
It be a total friggan disaster.

-- Imagine a run away fly by wire train where nobody can wrestle control away from its computer headed into Grand Central 125MPH.
Who knows what lax security and determined terrorist software hackers are lurking in the French aviation industry.
I feel sorry for those people living in South Queens when those computer controlled 900 passenger Airbus A380s start working JFK automated.
The FAA is already been testing all this "new and improved" euro computer shit at LGA.
All it does is make way for more bored, lazy or unskilled pilots. Now add hordes of bird population's to the equation.
---Anything to make or save a $$$ too hell with the people living below.

Anonymous said...

"Feel free to post about the Amtrak Acela"

--I asked:
Montreal-based Bombardier built the first 20 Acela train sets (now being retired)and has scrapped plans to any more.
To many problems and cost overruns, after 12 years the tilt mechanisms are still not right (cant run at full speed), people still get locked in the bathrooms, computer and hardware problems, other problems. Some cars are almost 5 inches wider then others and cant be interchanged if something goes wrong they take the whole train out of service.
Congress had enough of this shit, many of its members are riders who haven't been to happy.

Looks like Hitachi and Siemens (Germany) are getting the contracts to build the new ones

Anonymous said...

With a lot of substandard track bed, I wouldn't want to be riding on a high speed train that's running on them!

Anonymous said...

They're not retiring the Acelas anytime soon. The HHP-8, that powered Regionals, are a headache and Amtrak needs to keep up with demand on the electrified NE corridor. What may happen is that the Acela train sets will get longer by trading off an increased number of passenger cars per train with reducing the number of train sets. The spare Acela locomotives can haul conventional cars at higher speed for Acela or Keystone service.

Anonymous said...

Fly by wire control are used in military jets for quite awhile. Computer controlled? Your car engine is computer controlled as well.Do you think you can turn your car without any mechanical assistance?