Thursday, July 24, 2008

Ridership Still Going Up!

Rip has discussed this earlier. Even so, the riders just keep on coming, especially in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Here's the story according to Railway Age.

True enough that Rip has been less than kind to DART in the past, their ridership is a success story.

Their relationship with Trinity Rail Express is symbiotic, to be sure. So, not surprisingly TRE is experiencing growth as well. One contributing factor is the ridiculously low fare to transfer from one to the other. Metroplex residents are clearly taking advantage!

On another note, a forum in Flyertalk mentions how Amtrak's Acela is doing quite well, too. The forum specifically addresses the Boston to New York portion of the run, a segment that has been criticized for being slower than planned. But, the point is that it is all good news.

It is clear that the traveling public is embracing rail transportation. The question we all hear more and more now, can the rail industry respond by updating old facilities and building new infrastucture? Good question! We'll talk more later!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Isn't It Time for This Year's Rippers?

Yes, but . . . . .

When the idea for the Rippers came about, it seemed logical to mention in an on-line format both the good and the bad of the Transit Agency Community. The goal was noble enough, maybe some positive and negative reaction would benefit all of us. Sort of a "rising tide lifts all boats" way of thinking.

I was also aware that you had your nominees for these awards, as did I. The problem is, I never heard about yours! Except on one or two occasions.

Not only that, but lately it seems that the quality common denominator of Construction Documents from almost all of these Transit Agencies is going down rather than up. These dastardly downward cosmic forces are clearly more powerful than a simple blog-created award.

Therefore, the Ripper, as the coveted award it was, is going away. That doesn't mean that comments directed toward transit agencies, whether nasty or supportive, are going away. It just means that they will be more informal, and done on a more frequent basis than annually.

Just to set the record straight, here is a "Ripper" . . .

. . . from Rutt's Hut in Clifton, New Jersey!

Long may these Rippers be served!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

A Long Island Scrap Drive Success Story

Progressive Railroading notes the financial success of picking up the scrap steel that litters the Right-of-Way. How many times have track workers said that getting the scrap rights to a railroad would be lucrative?

Good on ya, LIRR!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

A Riptrack "Tip-of-the-Hat" to . . .

. . . all the workers who are putting the railroad back in order after the flooding. Progressive Railroading has an update to a story that has flown under the radar of the MSM.

If this photo courtesy of Drudge from Missouri is typical,

alot of long and tiring work was and is required. Thanks again to all involved.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

FRA Safety Concerns

A quick note that the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) has a link to a letter from Federal Railway Administration's Joe Boardman concerning railway worker protection. You can get to it here.

Basically, the FRA is concerned about the increase in worker deaths over the past few years, and is stepping up inspections and will "issue violations where conditions warrant".

Safety is always of prime importance when working on or around the railroad. Anything that can help protect track workers, whether Railroad employees or Contract employees, is good. The potential that the FRA for a positive impact here is up for discussion, but now that the Safety Issue is on their radar, those who actually can make a positive impact must now do so.