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jrud

MARC (Maryland Area Regional Commuter) Equipment

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Anything directly related to MARC Equipment including locomotives, passenger cars, ticket machines, stations, PTC, etc.

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There are plenty of other threads that discuss various aspects of MARC equipment.

 

If you have something specific to discuss, start a thread. We don't need a single rudderless thread with no real content.

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There are plenty of other threads that discuss various aspects of MARC equipment.

 

If you have something specific to discuss, start a thread. We don't need a single rudderless thread with no real content.

Agreed. I try to only start threads if I have a specific question or notable information that doesn't fit anywhere else.

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I’m used to aircraft and military forums that tend to have bigger topics (Indian Navy, F-35...). Very focused topics seem to wander way off topic quickly. In affect, they become a broader topic but not as easy to find. For example, the MARC and Amtrak HHP-8 failures discussion in the Amtrak Siemens Charger section. Or, the topics die quickly. The MARC Charger Starting Service topic had one older entry when I found it. Broader topics seem to last longer while still providing structure. The “what are you doing” topic on this forum may not be very specific but does get lots of posts. One other way is to introduce a more focussed hierarchy and have, for example, a DC area commuter category with smaller topics under it. Some of the larger rail forums use that idea successfully to make it easier to find info. In the end, posting is optional. TTFN

Edited by jrud

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MARC has a few interesting equipment related items that have been spread around on this forum or have no obvious home. PTC and HHP-8 update are two examples. The MRAC (MARC Riders Advisory Council) Minutes are a place to start. https://mta.maryland.gov/marc-riders-advisory-council-meeting-minutes-0

 

Hey, I looked at the minutes of the last MRAC meeting, and I see that WMATA has eliminated the "metro option" for dealing with MARC/VRE meltdowns. (They let people ride Metro by showing a MARC or VRE ticket. I actually used that once when flooding on the Anacostia River caused all the Penn Line trains to terminate at New Carrolton..) Another boneheaded move by Metro to discourage people from taking public transportation. They really need to think regionally and have all of the different fiefdoms -- States, agencies, operators work together to make sure we poor harried commuters can get around without too much hassle. Traffic is bad enough as it is. Each rush hour MARC train has over 1,000 passengers. How would the jurisdictions like it if all of us started driving around in single occupancy vehicles? Think the Beltway is jammed up now? Heh, he, just wait.

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MARC has a few interesting equipment related items that have been spread around on this forum or have no obvious home. PTC and HHP-8 update are two examples. The MRAC (MARC Riders Advisory Council) Minutes are a place to start. https://mta.maryland.gov/marc-riders-advisory-council-meeting-minutes-0

Hey, I looked at the minutes of the last MRAC meeting, and I see that WMATA has eliminated the "metro option" for dealing with MARC/VRE meltdowns. (They let people ride Metro by showing a MARC or VRE ticket. I actually used that once when flooding on the Anacostia River caused all the Penn Line trains to terminate at New Carrolton..) Another boneheaded move by Metro to discourage people from taking public transportation. They really need to think regionally and have all of the different fiefdoms -- States, agencies, operators work together to make sure we poor harried commuters can get around without too much hassle. Traffic is bad enough as it is. Each rush hour MARC train has over 1,000 passengers. How would the jurisdictions like it if all of us started driving around in single occupancy vehicles? Think the Beltway is jammed up now? Heh, he, just wait.

These days I think the chances of a WMATA meltdown are greater than a MARC meltdown. Maybe that's why it was eliminated.

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I’m used to aircraft and military forums that tend to have bigger topics (Indian Navy, F-35...). Very focused topics seem to wander way off topic quickly. In affect, they become a broader topic but not as easy to find. For example, the MARC and Amtrak HHP-8 failures discussion in the Amtrak Siemens Charger section. Or, the topics die quickly. The MARC Charger Starting Service topic had one older entry when I found it. Broader topics seem to last longer while still providing structure. The “what are you doing” topic on this forum may not be very specific but does get lots of posts. One other way is to introduce a more focussed hierarchy and have, for example, a DC area commuter category with smaller topics under it. Some of the larger rail forums use that idea successfully to make it easier to find info. In the end, posting is optional. TTFN

I generally dislike those broader topics in other forums. They tend to be about nothing in particular, and you miss important news because it’s buried amongst tons and tons of mundane stuff (My train was 6 minutes late...there’s a burnt out lightbulb on the platform at Martinsburg...the conductor dressed up like an old-timey railroad guy for Halloween...MARC just announced they’re electrifying the entire system and buying Japanese bullet trains...Some passengers missed the train because it departed from track 2 instead of track 1...What do you think of their current bilevel cars?...Here’s a photo I took of my friend riding MARC in 1995...etc.).

 

Then when someone who then learns of a big announcement and doesn’t see a topic about it, they create one, only to be jumped on by self-appointed thread police who say “That’s already being discussed in the catch-all thread.”

 

If you have a problem with thread drift, ask a moderator to make a post bringing things back on topic or to split the way off-topic stuff into a separate thread.

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^^^ What he says.

 

For example, the BWI station improvements should really have their own thread in the Amtrak forum, being an Amtrak station.

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MARC has a few interesting equipment related items that have been spread around on this forum or have no obvious home. PTC and HHP-8 update are two examples. The MRAC (MARC Riders Advisory Council) Minutes are a place to start. https://mta.maryland.gov/marc-riders-advisory-council-meeting-minutes-0

Hey, I looked at the minutes of the last MRAC meeting, and I see that WMATA has eliminated the "metro option" for dealing with MARC/VRE meltdowns. (They let people ride Metro by showing a MARC or VRE ticket. I actually used that once when flooding on the Anacostia River caused all the Penn Line trains to terminate at New Carrolton..) Another boneheaded move by Metro to discourage people from taking public transportation. They really need to think regionally and have all of the different fiefdoms -- States, agencies, operators work together to make sure we poor harried commuters can get around without too much hassle. Traffic is bad enough as it is. Each rush hour MARC train has over 1,000 passengers. How would the jurisdictions like it if all of us started driving around in single occupancy vehicles? Think the Beltway is jammed up now? Heh, he, just wait.

These days I think the chances of a WMATA meltdown are greater than a MARC meltdown. Maybe that's why it was eliminated.
This is a simultaneous meltdown question. IOW. Unless there is a common cause like high wind stopping/slowing all above ground passenger rail operations (it happened), WMATA and MARC are unlikely to meltdown on the same day. They do have some capacity to backup each other. The fact that WMATA was doing it for free is intriguing.

 

MARC delays have been bad recently as shown in the Minutes. Can an integrated transportation policy with in place backup help. How can the Penn and Camden lines better backup each other. As an engineer (not of the train driving kind) the lack of redundancy seems unforgivable. Should MARC have busses to shuffle between stations when needed. What do other commuter rail systems do? Hopefully at least a few don’t keep people for hours on a broken down train.

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Considering that WMATA has scheduled meltdowns in the form of track outage for maintenance almost every day these days, for the foreseeable future ... ;) In general it is quite a challenge to use WMATA quite often what with bustitutions and what not. But of course that has noting to do with MARC anyway.

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Has MARC service deteriorated noticeably recently? I ride a parallel Metro Rail train, but I read about crew training problems related to Charger locomotive setup, increased CSX interference, and the expectation that PTC will make things worse. All of this on top off existing problems with older locomotives, etc. The latest statistics I can find are from the middle of the year and they don’t seem good.

Edited by jrud

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Has MARC service deteriorated noticeably recently? I ride a parallel Metro Rail train, but I read about crew training problems related to Charger locomotive setup, increased CSX interference, and the expectation that PTC will make things worse. All of this on top off existing problems with older locomotives, etc. The latest statistics I can find are from the middle of the year and they dont seem good.

Can't speak about Camden and Brunswick lines, but Penn Line is doing OK. They slowed the schedule over the summer due to track work, so now I have to get up a half hour earlier in the morning to xatch a train at 0521 instead of the 0550 I used to ride, and that one has been running on time pretty consistently. It's usualy being pushed by an HHP8.

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On another thread I read about someone talking to a MARC engineer concerning the Charger. The engineer said the locomotive was fine once you got used to it. That could well relate to the setup training problems I read about. Maybe some things are starting to get better. I’m an early riser too. Try to catch the Metro Rail armt Greenbelt around 6:00am from north of Columbia. Not as early as you probably.

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