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what's going on with Crescent 19 on Mon. 3/12?


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#21 GaSteve

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Posted 11 March 2018 - 01:13 PM

So, how come 20(11) and 19(10) are running and 20 is on time !



#22 Thirdrail7

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Posted 11 March 2018 - 02:00 PM

So, how come 20(11) and 19(10) are running and 20 is on time !

 

19(10) was never supposed to be anywhere near harms way and they are hoping 20(11...which is on time but no where near the trouble area) could make it before the Roanoke area is completely slammed.

 

 

Would it make you feel better to see them canceled or late? After all, 20 hasa tough time operating from MEI-BHM-ATL on time without a storm. Would it do you good to see them late?


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#23 tricia

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Posted 11 March 2018 - 02:01 PM

Looking at the weather today, I'm truly baffled by this cancellation. Had it not been cancelled, #19 (the cancelled train that I was ticketed to board in TCA early tomorrow AM) would have left NYC by now, where it's in the mid-40s and sunny. Partly sunny and near 50 in DC, with no rain/snow forecast until long after the train would have left. No high winds forecast.

 

Bad pre-emptive call, as best I can tell--unless the "problem area" was someplace else?  

 

How often does this sort of last-minute, pre-emptive cancellation happen?


Edited by tricia, 11 March 2018 - 02:02 PM.


#24 GaSteve

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Posted 11 March 2018 - 06:14 PM

" before the Roanoke area is completely slammed."  20 doesn't go anywhere near Roanoke.  The closest is Danville and Lynchburg, both 50 to 70 miles away and to the east where there is not supposed to be nearly as much storm.



#25 Ryan

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Posted 11 March 2018 - 08:02 PM

Draw a line between Danville and Lynchburg.

See where that line comes closest to Roanoke.

You'll find the amusingly named Hurt, VA to be a whopping 35 miles of Roanoke, and within the Winter Weather Advisory.

Over the course of a 1,000 mile plus, that's pretty close.
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#26 Thirdrail7

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Posted 11 March 2018 - 08:59 PM

Looking at the weather today, I'm truly baffled by this cancellation. Had it not been cancelled, #19 (the cancelled train that I was ticketed to board in TCA early tomorrow AM) would have left NYC by now, where it's in the mid-40s and sunny. Partly sunny and near 50 in DC, with no rain/snow forecast until long after the train would have left. No high winds forecast.

 

Bad pre-emptive call, as best I can tell--unless the "problem area" was someplace else?  

 

How often does this sort of last-minute, pre-emptive cancellation happen?

 

I'm not sure why you think or thought the problem area involved NYP-WAS. This storm is a south/west storm. Preemptive cancellations occur quite a bit. Some turn out to be premature while sometimes it turns out not enough cancellations occurred.

 

 

 

" before the Roanoke area is completely slammed."  20 doesn't go anywhere near Roanoke.  The closest is Danville and Lynchburg, both 50 to 70 miles away and to the east where there is not supposed to be nearly as much storm.

 

I'm not sure if you realize this but I said the Roanoke area. I said this for a reason. It is because Roanoke is also a large region, which this storm is supposed to impact. The Crescent and the Lynchburger are right against the outer fringes of region and there was a prediction of a major snowfall and ice. Again, this can lead to trees across the tracks, signal outages etc. 

 

Earlier predictions called for the storm to begin earlier Sunday. However, it looks as though it will be more of a Monday storm:Season's biggest snowfall likely Monday

 


 

UPDATE 11 PM, 3/10/2018: The only change I'm making tonight based on forecast guidance is to just call this a MONDAY storm and not a Sunday night-Monday storm. There may be some snow before midnight Sunday, but it is becoming increasingly clear that the vast majority of accumulating snow will be after midnight and a good part of it may be Monday during daylight hours, possibly lingering well into the afternoon. The later arrival actually reflects what may become a more potent storm, as the upper-level low closes off (think of the swirling energy in the atmosphere cutting out a doughnut of frigid air, with enhanced lift north of its center) and moves east much more slowly while the coastal surface low takes a bit longer to deepen, allowing for longer duration and perhaps more intense snowfall. If this trend continues we may indeed see the 6-10-inch amounts in a swath somewhere through or near our region, with much of the snow falling during the day Monday, most heavily in the morning.  So delayed is definitely not denied, and may in fact be intensified. END UPDATE

-----

It really isn't saying much to suggest the snowfall Sunday night and Monday will probably be Roanoke's largest of the 2017-18 "winter" season (technically already spring on the meteorological calendar) when the previous largest snow is 2.1 inches (Jan. 17) for Roanoke. But it is well within the realm of possibility that Roanoke's seasonal snowfall total -- up to 5.4 inches with 3/10 of an inch in Thursday's snow squalls -- could double with this almost mid-March winter storm, coming a little more than two weeks after the hottest February day on record at 84 degrees and 10 days after 60 mph winds knocked power off for thousands.

 

A widespread 3-6-inch snowfall appears likely across virtually all of Southwest Virginia and Western Virginia at least as far north as the I-64 corridor, starting late Sunday evening and continuing into Monday perhaps even into the afternoon, with localized amounts of up to 8 inches possible, perhaps even 10 in a few spots, mainly higher elevations and locations west and north of Roanoke. The National Weather Service has issued winter storm watches for all of the state from Smith Mountain Lake to the West Virginia line, from I-64 to the North Carolina line, and even a little beyond those boundaries. An upgrade to a winter storm warning is likely for most of all of these areas on Sunday.

 

The I-64 corridor includes CVS, which the Crescent, Lynchburger and Cardinal pass through. Had this stormed started when initially predicted, 19(11) would have been in the thick of it.

 

Even the city of Lynchburg sounded alerts on Saturday: VDOT, City of Lynchburg issue weather warning

 

 

Local motorists should expect the possibility of some road hazards, including accumulating snow and/or rain, according to a news release from the Virginia Department of Transportation.

According to the National Weather Service, the Lynchburg area is likely to see a mix of rain and snow Sunday through Monday. A winter storm watch is in effect for the counties of Amherst and Bedford through Monday.

 

 

 

Additionally, the host has numerous lines throughout that area which will be in the path of the storm...which they intend to concentrate on. Therefore, if switches DO fail, tress fall down or signals go out, road conditions will likely hinder personnel from rendering assistance.  Hopefully. 20(11) will be able to avoid any trouble.


They say laughter is the best medicine. Obviously they never posted on AU.


#27 tricia

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:09 AM

Well, since the National Weather Service is predicting, for the Roanoke area, three inches or less of snow, temps no lower than the 20s, and little wind, I'd certainly expect that ANY train in the area should "avoid any trouble" of the weather-related variety.

 

I'm wondering whether the cancellation is more about host railroad just messing with Amtrak.


Edited by tricia, 12 March 2018 - 08:11 AM.


#28 Ryan

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:14 AM

The forecast is a low confidence one with lots and lots of variability.

Discussion of what the forecast is saying today, days after decisions were made isn’t very relevant.
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#29 Don Newcomb

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:16 AM

It is a tough position. Look at Tricia. She had vacation plans, hotels and various other arrangements in place. I........


People don't build enough flexibility into their travel. I was once on a flight from Narita to LAX, we got airborne but seemed to be hanging around the area. The Captain got on the PA and told us that one of the plane's landing gears was stuck in the down position. We'd have to go back to Narita but first we had to burn off fuel to get light enough to land. An hour later we're back on the ground, waiting, while Japanese immigration tried to figure out how to admit us back into Japan for the overnight stay. I had used miles to upgrade to business class and was enjoying the free drinks. Many of my fellow business-class passengers were in a pluperfect panic. They were on a tight schedule and had to be in a meeting in LA that morning. The LA departures are among the last to leave Narita and the only possible flight to the US was Honolulu, with dubious connections to LA. I used the courtesy phone in the business-class lounge to cancel my lay-over in LA and poured another Suntory. Eventually, we got admitted back through Japanese immigration, boarded a bus and put up at a decent hotel on United's nickel. The next morning we were fed a good breakfast, bussed back to Narita loaded onto the same (now fixed) airplane and flown to LA. Since I had canceled my lay-over I just used my existing onward connections to get home. Easy-peasy. I had left some slack in my schedule.

 

I don't know if the panicked account executives, rushing to their LA meetings made it there or got stuck in Honolulu.  When you book non-refundable accommodations, you take a risk. If you don't leave some slack in your schedule, you also take a risk. That risk can be mitigated by buying travel insurance. 



#30 Thirdrail7

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:30 AM



Well, since the National Weather Service is predicting, for the Roanoke area, three inches or less of snow, temps no lower than the 20s, and little wind, I'd certainly expect that ANY train in the area should "avoid any trouble" of the weather-related variety.

 

 

Which justifies the decision to run 20(11)..  I will note they closed the schools in Lynchburg today and three inches of snow with sub freezing temperatures isn't something to overlook, particularly if you need support and they are slipping or sliding on roads.

 

 



 

I'm wondering whether the cancellation is more about host railroad just messing with Amtrak.

 

I doubt it. The hosts didn't cancel the train. They could have operated but assistance wouldn't have been readily available. 

 

Do any Cardinal passengers want to comment?


Edited by Thirdrail7, 12 March 2018 - 08:32 AM.

They say laughter is the best medicine. Obviously they never posted on AU.


#31 tricia

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:31 AM

 

It is a tough position. Look at Tricia. She had vacation plans, hotels and various other arrangements in place. I........


People don't build enough flexibility into their travel. I was once on a flight from Narita to LAX, we got airborne but seemed to be hanging around the area. The Captain got on the PA and told us that one of the plane's landing gears was stuck in the down position. We'd have to go back to Narita but first we had to burn off fuel to get light enough to land. An hour later we're back on the ground, waiting, while Japanese immigration tried to figure out how to admit us back into Japan for the overnight stay. I had used miles to upgrade to business class and was enjoying the free drinks. Many of my fellow business-class passengers were in a pluperfect panic. They were on a tight schedule and had to be in a meeting in LA that morning. The LA departures are among the last to leave Narita and the only possible flight to the US was Honolulu, with dubious connections to LA. I used the courtesy phone in the business-class lounge to cancel my lay-over in LA and poured another Suntory. Eventually, we got admitted back through Japanese immigration, boarded a bus and put up at a decent hotel on United's nickel. The next morning we were fed a good breakfast, bussed back to Narita loaded onto the same (now fixed) airplane and flown to LA. Since I had canceled my lay-over I just used my existing onward connections to get home. Easy-peasy. I had left some slack in my schedule.

 

I don't know if the panicked account executives, rushing to their LA meetings made it there or got stuck in Honolulu.  When you book non-refundable accommodations, you take a risk. If you don't leave some slack in your schedule, you also take a risk. That risk can be mitigated by buying travel insurance. 

 

 

For heavens sake, OF COURSE I left some slack in my schedule. I'd planned to stay overnight in a hotel near the Amtrak station, at both ends of the trip. Also made sure that all of my reservations were refundable. It still has taken me hours to cancel and rebook and rearrange schedules. And I still don't understand why.

 

And at no point, before or since the cancellation decision was made around 5:30PM on Friday, have I seen any forecast that showed any weather that's at all out of the ordinary for the mountains and piedmont areas anywhere near where the Crescent runs. That's why I initially assumed the problem must be farther north--I knew there was no problem with the weather farther south since I live here and keep an eye on that.

 

Maybe I'm being cranky and unreasonable. Maybe Amtrak should give up on running trains anywhere snow might fall.



#32 Thirdrail7

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:44 AM


And at no point, before or since the cancellation decision was made around 5:30PM on Friday, have I seen any forecast that showed any weather that's at all out of the ordinary for the mountains and piedmont areas anywhere near where the Crescent runs.

 

 

Hmmm. Amtrakblue posted a map of the area. I posted an advisory that showed the area being under an alert. I posted a link that showed that one of the main stations along the route may have a large amount of snow....and what you're leaving out is the ACCUMULATIVE impact since the area had significant weather events over the last few weeks. You also leaving out WIND, which can be extremely serious. All you have to do is look back to Virginia's weather last week, and see it wasn't the SNOW that stranded trains. It was HIGH WINDS combined with saturated grounds.

 

 


Maybe I'm being cranky and unreasonable.

 

 

Probably but you did have plans. I'd be annoyed too! My town closed the schools because of a snowy forecast and NOTHING occurred. It didn't EVEN RAIN!! Sure,the snow eventually appeared but they could have definitely finished a half day at least. it is easy to sit back and Monday morning quarterback and complain about something that did or didn't occur to your liking. However, I respected the fact they made the decision early so we had time to make arrangements. I appreciated they acted with caution and took the safe course. Of course, the children will be in school until July.

 

 

 

That is why I said it is a TOUGH decision because if they ran the trains, and it hit something and derailed or it was stranded due to outages without support...and you found out Amtrak KNEW there wouldn't be any support, you'd probably "be baffled" by their decision to operate the train.


Edited by Thirdrail7, 12 March 2018 - 08:48 AM.

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#33 Thirdrail7

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:54 AM

 

 Maybe Amtrak should give up on running trains anywhere snow might fall.

 

 

It depends on area. Operating the LSL through the lake effect snow storms isn't as difficult since that territory may have more provisions and personnel to combat the conditions. The same goes for trains that pass through Raton.  UP has Jordan Spreaders and plow trains to help clear the tracks. Now, take 5 inches of snow with ice and put in the Norfolk or Newport News area of Virginia. They don't have the resources to deal with that sort of 'freak' storm. Heck, Chesapeake received 3 inches last year and their schools were closed for three days and Amtrak cancel service and the thruway connection.  This is because they didn't have the resources to combat those conditions. They don't have plows, salt and literally had to wait for it to melt on its own in some cases.

 

Every operation is different. Conditions can vary.


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#34 GaSteve

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 12:04 PM

20(12) appears to be operating and is pretty much on time.



#35 AmtrakBlue

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 12:46 PM

20(12) appears to be operating and is pretty much on time.

My guess, looking at the weather radar, is that 20(12) will follow the storm up the east coast.  It may still encounter downed trees or other issues, but not the storm itself.



#36 west point

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 07:38 PM

Did this experiment few years ago.  Friend and I took a 73 chevy and late model car (2012 ?) on a snow and ice evaluation.  Late model scared the  xxxxx out of us.  Those performances tell us that  support personnel cannot get to help stranded rail trains. 



#37 Thirdrail7

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 07:52 AM



Looking at the weather today, I'm truly baffled by this cancellation. Had it not been cancelled, #19 (the cancelled train that I was ticketed to board in TCA early tomorrow AM) would have left NYC by now, where it's in the mid-40s and sunny. Partly sunny and near 50 in DC, with no rain/snow forecast until long after the train would have left. No high winds forecast.

 

Bad pre-emptive call, as best I can tell--unless the "problem area" was someplace else?  

 

How often does this sort of last-minute, pre-emptive cancellation happen?

 

Here is another example of last-minute,preemptive cancellations. Amtrak started canceling trains yesterday, anticipating a major storm.  The option for travel still existed, late in the day. However, that has changed and now service has been completely suspended. There are trickle down effects on other routes(such as 111 and 182, which were outside the storm area). I nthe case of the Vermonter, service was suspended north of New Haven within an hour of the departure.  

 

That's pretty last minute. At least you received enough notice to make other arrangements.

 

 

 

 



 

Maybe Amtrak should give up on running trains anywhere snow might fall.

 

 

Well, it occurred today. It was a tough decision and it will still be second guessed. However, it is probably best to send a few patrol trains out to look for problems instead of potentially stranding the passengers.


They say laughter is the best medicine. Obviously they never posted on AU.


#38 west point

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 08:50 PM

One of the big problems on the NEC is the CAT.  The PRR type CAT construction technique has a high probably of all tracks getting pulled down if a major incident happens to one track's CAT.  Now the replacement constant tension being constructed between Trenton and somewhere north will have each track independent of the others.  Of course a strike on a cross beam might bring all track's CAT.  Now all our  posters have another reason to campaign for more Constant tension/ 



#39 Thirdrail7

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 09:39 PM

One of the big problems on the NEC is the CAT.  The PRR type CAT construction technique has a high probably of all tracks getting pulled down if a major incident happens to one track's CAT.  Now the replacement constant tension being constructed between Trenton and somewhere north will have each track independent of the others.  Of course a strike on a cross beam might bring all track's CAT.  Now all our  posters have another reason to campaign for more Constant tension/ 

 

None of that matters if there is a burning tree in the catenary or signals are out because of a commercial power loss. This stuff occurs in storms. The NHB route has their fair share of wires coming down on multiple tracks and it has constant tension.


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#40 jis

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 10:41 PM

What does Constant Tension or not have to do with whether the catenary structures are vulnerable to multiple track outage from a single event? Not much.


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