Blackouts and Knockouts
dmschanoes at earthlink.net
Sat Aug 16 13:48:50 MDT 2003
Not to take up too much of the list time and bandwidth with
the basic numbers of GCT, I have presented two or three
papers on operations in GCT at conferences, one at the 20th
Conference of Pan-American Railroads in Havana, 2000. That
paper is in Spanish and English (the translators loved me, and
I loved them, saved me from my own ignorance many times) and
I will send an ecopy to anyone who desires it, absolutely
free of charge.
But wait,there's more, if you order right now, I will include
a copy of the introduction to the Havana Paper, written at
the request of comrades from the Cuban Ministry of Transportation who wanted
to know if I had knowledge
of Batista's armored train. Which I did.
And that's not all, if you order right now, our operators
will make sure that you get any future papers on a priority
Re the blackout. Right at 1612 hours, the beginning of the
rush hour, when the platforms are mostly occupied with smaller
size trains (6 cars instead of 8s and 10s) as we try to size
the trains to match the curve of ridership-- and most of the
larger trains are in yards or enroute to GCT (as passenger or
empty deadhead trains) so then as the delay builds, more and
more people show up and we are less and less able to handle
the volume even after the power is restored, so the really
excruciating time, during the rush hour is the recovery from
the power outage.
The power outage affected electric propulsion power,
DC 3rd rail, and AC overhead catenary used on the New Haven line (45% of
Metro North Ridership is on
the NH Line)
We also lost signal and switch power so we could
not route trains to proper tracks, or identify their
locations, provide signal instructions etc. Thus, we
do not attempt to run diesel locomotive service without
signal, switch, and communications systems in operation.
only thing to do is evacuate people from the disabled
trains with the 1st priority given to trains disabled in
the Park Avenue tunnel (emergency exists at 56th, 59th,
72, and 86th streets).
After that, you secure the equipment (handbrakes, etc.) making sure you have
the exact information as to which trains and what size trains are on every
track. Then you
sequester the train crews as they have a tendency to
wander off in search of....who knows? hotel rooms?
free drinks? Develop a proposed schedule when power is restored, and put
your feet up.
Meanwhile because fire/life safety systems and their redundant power
supplies were exhausted, the police clear the terminal putting 60,000
commuters on 42nd, Lex, 45th and Vanderbilt.
Oh, and may of these 60,000 will tell you that they are
a better class of people and can't be treated that way, and "do you know who
I am?" Usually, because of my
excessive charm, why just ask Lou, I get the chance to
go out and address my betters, telling them, "Do you know who I am," and
when the obnoxious guy (usually
a guy) says NO. I say, "I'm the only hope you have, and
right now your hope is fading." (Great part of the job, headline reads:
--Jewish Boy transplanted to Lower East Side tells rich
WASPS from New Canaan to take a number and wait.--)
And wait we do.
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