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Amtrak suspends train service between Eugene and Vancouver, B.C.
OregonLive.com ^ | August 3, 2007 | OregonLive

Posted on 08/03/2007 7:05:44 AM PDT by Bean Counter

Amtrak has announced a major disruption of train service in the Pacific Northwest.

Only train no. 510 and 517, which run between Seattle and Vancouver, B.C., will operate. All other Cascade trains between Eugene and Vancouver are cancelled due to safety concerns. An Amtrak representative this morning said the disruption is undefinite.

Rail authorities said a recent mechanical inspection of some Cascades trains led to the decision to suspend service so all Cascade trains can be inspected.

Amtrak officials say they are contacting passengers to alert them of the cancellations. No alternate transportation is being provided. An Amtrak representative said passengers holding unused tickets will receive refunds.

The Coast Starlight, which runs between Seattle and Los Angeles, will operate on its normal schedule.

Passengers may call 800-USA-RAIL or visit Amtrak.com for additional information and train status updates.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Oregon; US: Washington
KEYWORDS: amtrack; amtrak; transportation
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Some just realized that if the Federal Highway Systems bridges are in poor shape, the RFederal Railroad bridges are likey 10 times worse. The bridge that Amtrack uses to cross the Columbia River is well over 100 years old and looks like it hasn't been painted since 1952...

Developing...

1 posted on 08/03/2007 7:05:47 AM PDT by Bean Counter
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To: Bean Counter
the disruption is undefinite.

"Undefinite"????

2 posted on 08/03/2007 7:08:36 AM PDT by IronJack (=)
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To: Bean Counter

undefinite

Indefinite or unidentified?


3 posted on 08/03/2007 7:10:00 AM PDT by leadpenny
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To: Bean Counter
Outside the Northeast corridor, railroad bridges are generally privately owned. Mainline bridges are well maintained. Most will accomodate a full length trains of 286,000lb. freight cars.

Do these Amtrak trains use a bridge not also used by freight trains?

4 posted on 08/03/2007 7:10:54 AM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: IronJack

Undefinite is not in my dictionary?


5 posted on 08/03/2007 7:12:02 AM PDT by Halgr (Once a Marine, always a Marine - Semper Fi)
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To: Bean Counter

The Amtrak press release indicated it was the train equipment which required inspection.


6 posted on 08/03/2007 7:13:45 AM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: IronJack

Beat me to it - ah, the product of our modern university journalism programs. Just makes ya proud, don’t it?

Colonel, USAFR


7 posted on 08/03/2007 7:14:02 AM PDT by jagusafr ("Bugs, Mr. Rico! Zillions of 'em!" - Robert Heinlein)
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To: Bean Counter

Terrorist threat???


8 posted on 08/03/2007 7:20:01 AM PDT by Lokibob (Some people are like slinkys. Useless, but if you throw them down the stairs, you smile.)
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To: Lokibob

Who’s going to bother blowing up a few trains in remote Canada?


9 posted on 08/03/2007 7:23:20 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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To: jagusafr

Now if only everyone on the Internet realized there is no such word as “definAtely”.


10 posted on 08/03/2007 7:23:58 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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To: Bean Counter

It’s not the bridges - or rail. It’s the trains.

Many of the bridges are honestly, very well engineered. I’d say better than the cheap quick garbage put up in our generation. Paint isn’t necessary; and how do you know it’s not a rust coat?


11 posted on 08/03/2007 7:26:18 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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To: Bean Counter

Yesterday they announced $100 in free booze, and now this. Maybe they expected something and wanted the riders plastered when it happens so they won’t feel it so bad....


12 posted on 08/03/2007 7:33:00 AM PDT by Abathar (Proudly catching hell for posting without reading the article since 2004)
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To: the OlLine Rebel

Eugene OR population 150,000
Vancouver, BC population 700,000
Hardly remote villages.


13 posted on 08/03/2007 7:38:01 AM PDT by Lokibob (Some people are like slinkys. Useless, but if you throw them down the stairs, you smile.)
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To: Lokibob

It’s relative. There is virtually nothing between them and 1-2000 mi away to the east.

Bottom line: terrorists would not be interested.


14 posted on 08/03/2007 7:40:20 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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Guess they didn’t use Rearden Metal


15 posted on 08/03/2007 7:40:32 AM PDT by Michael Barnes (If Rudy is the GOP's guy, I'm voting for Hillary. Hey, why do anything half ass?)
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To: Bean Counter; GMMAC; Pikamax; Former Proud Canadian; Alberta's Child; headsonpikes; Ryle; ...

16 posted on 08/03/2007 7:41:27 AM PDT by fanfan ("We don't start fights my friends, but we finish them, and never leave until our work is done."PMSH)
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To: Halgr

“Undefinite is not in my dictionary?”

Inless you spell it different.


17 posted on 08/03/2007 7:42:12 AM PDT by stormer
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To: IronJack

undefinable??
indefinitive
underfinity
innersanctity?
instability?
bad reporting?
C- in journalism?


18 posted on 08/03/2007 7:43:50 AM PDT by Tulsa Ramjet ("If not now, when?" "Because it's judgment that defeats us.")
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To: Bean Counter; Publius

Publius Rail Ping - Do you know anything about this?


19 posted on 08/03/2007 7:44:39 AM PDT by Libertina
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To: Bean Counter

If only Amtrak got government subsidies, it wouldn’t be in such bad shape.


20 posted on 08/03/2007 7:45:27 AM PDT by coloradan (Failing to protect the liberties of your enemies establishes precedents that will reach to yourself.)
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To: Lokibob

“Hardly remote villages.”

Right you are. I believe there may be a Hudson’s Bay Company outpost in Vancouver and perhaps a salmon cannery.


21 posted on 08/03/2007 7:52:13 AM PDT by stormer
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To: Mr. Lucky
Amtrak operates over the various carriers' rights of way.

When the railroads decided to get out of the passenger business in the 1950s and 1960's, they used to charge the entire cost of maintaining the mainline to the passenger trains that were on that route (e.g. Western Pacific's California Zephyr had to pay the entire cost of maintaining their main line from Oakland through the Sierras to Denver, the Coast Daylight and the Lark split the cost of the line from San Francisco to LA, etc.) It was a great way to show the passenger trains were losing money, even though they made money of a marginal basis and even if they were allocated only their share of maintenance including the freight traffic.

22 posted on 08/03/2007 7:53:51 AM PDT by CatoRenasci (Ceterum Censeo Arabiam Esse Delendam -- Forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit)
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To: the OlLine Rebel
Out in the bush, eh?
23 posted on 08/03/2007 7:54:07 AM PDT by stormer
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To: the OlLine Rebel

hmmm, so terrorists are only interested in trains that go between major cities that have large populations between them??? I suppose Seattle is not large enough??

No need to respond, I was just speculating.


24 posted on 08/03/2007 7:55:22 AM PDT by Lokibob (Some people are like slinkys. Useless, but if you throw them down the stairs, you smile.)
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To: Libertina
From one of our sources in the rail community:

"I just happened to be on duty at Centennial Station (Olympia) Thursday evening and received word from the Vancouver (WA) agent that a structural crack was found this morning in the Talgo trainset meant for Train 501. That train was pulled from service this morning for repair. A decision was then made to recall all Talgo trainsets to Seattle for inspection and repair. Trains 501 and 507 were cancelled today with no substitute bus service, but substitute buses were assigned to cover for 509 this evening. All afternoon northbound Talgo runs from Portland to Seattle were run, but Train 516 was terminated at Seattle with substitute buses continuing to all stations north to Bellingham.

"For Friday, buses will be substituted for all trains, except Coast Starlight trains 11 and 14. I have been told by 508's conductor this evening that equipment is being drawn in from elsewhere in the system as quickly as possible to resume the Cascades train runs. We can expect anything from Heritage Fleet on up at this point.

"There has been no determination made as to when the Talgo sets will return to service as of right now."

Bottom line: Cracks were found in the Talgo trainsets owned by WSDOT and operated by Amtrak. They have been taken out of service, and Amtrak is scrambling to find spare equipment from back east to fill in the gaps. No one knows yet how bad the problem is, how or whether it can be fixed easily, or when the trainsets will again be available for service.

25 posted on 08/03/2007 7:59:58 AM PDT by Publius (A = A)
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To: stormer

Nice, but again, it’s far removed from anywhere else in Canada. The vast majority of population in Canada is on the east side.

Sorry, it’s just not a prime target.


26 posted on 08/03/2007 8:03:05 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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To: Lokibob

This is just like the MN bridge. People speculating about terrorists. It’s highly unlikely, as the city itself is just plain not a prime target for any reason.

They struck the WTC and the Pentagon - and aimed for the Capitol/WH - for a REASON. They weren’t stupid - and not merely “symbolic” (if they wanted symbolic, why choose the boring albeit big WTC vs. the nearby SOL?). They were great targets to bring down - national government/military, economic center. Not mere symbols.

They still basically exist, so they’d still be top tier.

As I said in the MN thread, these other things would be like 10th-tier. After all the bigger and more important centers are blown up.


27 posted on 08/03/2007 8:06:59 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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To: Publius

28 posted on 08/03/2007 8:13:12 AM PDT by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: Publius

Much thanks! I knew I’d come to the right source! Now I’m off to get ready, I’m joining the inaugural s.o.w. d-train run to Kapowsin this morning :)


29 posted on 08/03/2007 8:14:25 AM PDT by Libertina
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To: Lokibob; the OlLine Rebel
Hardly remote villages.

Also, these trains pass through Portland, OR, and Seattle, WA.

30 posted on 08/03/2007 8:17:38 AM PDT by Brujo (Quod volunt, credunt.)
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To: CatoRenasci
The private railroads' agreement with Amtrak allocates the cost of track maintenance on a pro-rata basis up to the standards appropriate for freight operations and allocates to Amtrak all costs which benefit only passenger operations.

You may recall that the portion of the former California Zephyr between Denver and Salt Lake City continued to be operated by the Denver & Rio Grande for a number of years after Amtrak was created because that private railroad didn't want the government operated Amtrak screwing up schedules through the mountains.

31 posted on 08/03/2007 8:20:51 AM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: the OlLine Rebel
You must not have been "way out west", have you? No doubt that most Canadians live in Ontario and Quebec (62% of population). While British Columbia and Alberta account for about 25% of the nation's population, they also account for 30% of the national GDP. The more densely populated Ontario and Quebec account for 58% of GDP. From this standpoint, I'd say that makes the region relatively more economically important, and therefore more vulnerable.
32 posted on 08/03/2007 8:34:37 AM PDT by stormer
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To: Brujo

Yes, but I wouldn’t put those very high up either.

Of course, Seattle - or very near - does have the submarine base.


33 posted on 08/03/2007 8:37:38 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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To: the OlLine Rebel

The population of the City of Vancouver proper is only 700k or so, but if you factor in the metropolitan area, the population soars to over 2 million. It’s also a major port. It’s in direct competition with Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and L.A.

Off the top of my head, I can think of 4 more cities within 700 miles all with populations over 1 million, 2 of them in Canada. If we go to cities of 250k or more, you can add another 5, 3 in Canada.

BTW, the “alternate Capital” (should DC disappear or become unusable) of the USA is a sleepy little town of 20k population that is 40 miles from where I sit.

You might want to read a slightly newer than 1850’s population distribution chart. Yes, there are long stretches of unpopulated land, but have you ever driven the Nevada desert?

Your statement would have been far more accurate had you said the about 75% of the Canadian population lives within 200 miles of the US border.


34 posted on 08/03/2007 8:40:13 AM PDT by Don W ("Well Done" is far better to hear than "Well Said". (Samuel Clemens))
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To: Publius

That’s too bad. I’ve ridden the Cascade a couple of times between Seattle and Portland. The coaches are modern, comfortable and had AC power to run your laptop. Much better than driving if you’re going city center to city center.


35 posted on 08/03/2007 8:46:19 AM PDT by NewsJunqui
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To: the OlLine Rebel
Here are the settlements of Calgary and Edmonton. Nothing here of any interest.
36 posted on 08/03/2007 8:46:24 AM PDT by stormer
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To: Don W

OK, so the distribution is a bit better than I thought.

That still doesn’t change my mind that these places are not prime targets (seems everyone is anxious to prove their place is prime target material - or at least, as in PC world, all places are equal), neither Vancouver nor Minneapolis.

Doesn’t mean the jerk-offs wouldn’t do it just for fun; it’s just not bloody likely to be high on their priority lists.

It’s clear in the US the prime targets are DC and New York. It should be intuitively obvious why, regardless of 9/11. They were pretty smart and went beyond even just population matters never mind symbols, although those are part of it.


37 posted on 08/03/2007 8:49:25 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
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To: the OlLine Rebel

Vancouver: major port and financial centre.

Edmonton: key staging area for oil and gas production and exploration.

Calgary: business and financial centre for the oilpatch in Canada (the USA’s single largest trade partner, BTW).

Nope, not significant at all. Until the oil stops because someone blew something crucial up.


38 posted on 08/03/2007 8:59:15 AM PDT by Don W ("Well Done" is far better to hear than "Well Said". (Samuel Clemens))
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To: the OlLine Rebel
Let’s see - off the top of my head, military facilities around Puget Sound:

Fort Lewis, McChord AFB, Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Naval Station Everett (Carriers), Bangor Sub Base (Boomers and Attack), Keyport Undersea Warfare Laboratory, Command 13th Naval District, Whidbey Island NAS, USCG Station Seattle (plus several smaller ones), Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt (Command Maritime Forces Pacific), CFB Comox (AFB)... I’m sure there are others.

39 posted on 08/03/2007 8:59:34 AM PDT by stormer
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To: the OlLine Rebel

Piling on. From:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacific_Northwest

“Most of the population of the Pacific Northwest is concentrated in the Vancouver-Seattle-Portland corridor. This area is sometimes seen as a megacity (also known as a conurbation, an agglomeration, or a megalopolis). This megacity stretches along Interstate 5 in the states of Oregon and Washington and BC 99 in the province of British Columbia. As of 2004, the combined populations of the Greater Vancouver Lower Mainland, the Seattle metropolitan area and the Portland metropolitan area totaled almost nine million people.”


40 posted on 08/03/2007 9:08:02 AM PDT by stormer
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To: Don W

Do you think he gets it yet? Nice tag line.


41 posted on 08/03/2007 9:09:46 AM PDT by stormer
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To: IronJack
the disruption is undefinite.

"Undefinite"????

The exact date the repairs will be completed is incertain.

42 posted on 08/03/2007 9:10:04 AM PDT by The_Media_never_lie
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To: the OlLine Rebel
Yes, but I wouldn’t put those very high up either.

Of course, Seattle - or very near - does have the submarine base.

You never know, maybe they have a grudge against Microsoft in Redmond, WA, (right next to Seattle).

43 posted on 08/03/2007 9:14:06 AM PDT by Brujo (Quod volunt, credunt.)
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To: IronJack

unalienable....

an oops


44 posted on 08/03/2007 9:15:12 AM PDT by longtermmemmory (VOTE! http://www.senate.gov and http://www.house.gov)
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To: Don W

According to the stats I’ve seen, Vancouver is the second most populous city on the west coast.

It truly is a beautiful place.

And them Canadians love their bakeries! Yum!


45 posted on 08/03/2007 9:22:15 AM PDT by djf (Bush's legacy: Way more worried about Iraqs borders than our own!!! A once great nation... sad...)
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To: Mr. Lucky
You may recall that the portion of the former California Zephyr between Denver and Salt Lake City continued to be operated by the Denver & Rio Grande for a number of years after Amtrak was created because that private railroad didn't want the government operated Amtrak screwing up schedules through the mountains.

I do recall that, though I didn't realize the effect on scheduling was the reason. The Zephyr was my favorite of the transcontinental trains. The last time I rode the Zephyr was on my way back East to college in 1966 - first time I had a Pullman bedroom to myself. It was a glorious trip, and once the crew found out I was a rail buff, they went out of their way for me - bringing me up to the engines, serving me wine with my meals, making sure I had my dining car seating (with window seat) at the best sight-seeing times (there is NOTHING like having fresh trout (loaded at Rifle, caught that morning) with a 1959 Johannisburger Doktor Kabinett while descending down into Denver at Sunset - or fresh Dungeness Crab heading through the Feather River Canyon). 'Twas a memorable trip. At Chicago, I changed to an NY Central train to Cincinnati. They had sold me a Pullman ticket all the way through, but the train (the James Whitcomb Riley) was all coach -- until they put the Pullman observation car on for me.

The only SP trains I ever like were the Daylights (Coast and Shasta) which we used to take to LA and to see relatives in Oregon.

46 posted on 08/03/2007 9:23:13 AM PDT by CatoRenasci (Ceterum Censeo Arabiam Esse Delendam -- Forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit)
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To: NewsJunqui
The timing is really bad for this.

On weekdays the trains run from 1/3 to 1/2 of a full load. This is because -- thanks to the timing of the slots available on the BNSF main between the cities served -- there is little train service geared to the business traveler.

But on weekends the trains sell out, sometimes weeks in advance. Amtrak has taken to selling overflow space in the bistro car to handle the load. This weekend should see full trains booked, and now there aren't any cars to run them. This what is called "bad for business".

47 posted on 08/03/2007 9:59:42 AM PDT by Publius (A = A)
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To: Publius
Cracks were found in the Talgo trainsets owned by WSDOT and operated by Amtrak. They have been taken out of service, and Amtrak is scrambling to find spare equipment from back east to fill in the gaps.

I always thought it was a little odd that they were relying on Spanish technology.

48 posted on 08/03/2007 10:18:42 AM PDT by wideminded
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To: CatoRenasci
A Pullma room on the real California Zephyr? It doesn't get any better.
49 posted on 08/03/2007 10:24:08 AM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: Mr. Lucky
Of course, that's a Pullman room.
50 posted on 08/03/2007 10:25:44 AM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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