Monday, December 26, 2011

Bad Order, Part 1

Railway rolling stock has lots of moving parts.  When one or more of these parts becomes dangerously defective, the car is deemed Bad Order in need of repair.  Sometimes referred to as RIP`s, short for Repair In Place, the track designated for car repairs. Some repairs can be made en route, such as a conductor wiring a cut lever or changing an airhose.  More serious problems can include loose strapping or chains, doors or hatches that need to be repaired at the next RIP track. VIA F40PH-2 6402 has a bent pilot, and has been set out at Queens after striking the crossing at Collins Bay Road on March 6, 2005 (above).
There are problems that prevent the car from going past the next available set-out track.  Serious axle or wheel defects, draft gear or shifted loads are set out at the nearest siding or back track.  On CN`s Kingston Sub, a reduction in mainline switches and potential set-out tracks has made this process more challenging for crews and Rail Traffic Controllers.  A Grand Trunk Western 86-foot hi-cube auto parts boxcar is being taken to Belleville by a four-car local behind 4563 and caboose 79506 on June 15, 1979 (above).  Six months later, a Chicago & North Western four-door hi-cube boxcar has been set out on a spur across the Kingston Sub from the former Collins Bay station site.  Look ma, no 'B' end drawbar:
There are no more set-out tracks at Collins Bay or Ernestown, so RIP's now have to be dragged even farther along the main line.  CN train 519 behind 4123-4111 has VIA LRC coach 3300 sandwiched between its 11 freight cars as it heads past Kingston station on August 13, 1997 at 1400.  Note the jury-rigged trainline along the side of 3300:
If bad-ordered cars are set out, the nearest road repair truck will drive or hi-rail to the car to make the repairs.  CN's International road repair truck, complete with extra wheels awaits a call near the former Belleville roundhouse site in March, 1994:
CN`s current Belleville road repair truck is at the Invista nylon plant on the Cataraqui Spur last winter:
Cars that are able to move, and require heavy repairs to be made at a railway shop, contractor shop, car owner or other railway`s shop are placarded `Home Shop for Repair`and moved in a freight train to that shop.  Until recently, bad-ordered cars had a Bad Order defect car rolled up and left in a car holder on the carbody, detailing the exact defect requiring repair.  While this card is intended to accompany the car, someties the cards came loose, were blown away, and lost or recovered by railfans scouring the right-of-way.  CGTX 30524 rides toward repair aboard CP 315541 at Kingston station on May 4/09:
On January 1, 2011 Railinc, an AAR subsidiary, launched the Damaged and DEfective Car Tracking system, a computerized program which provides a streamlined, accurate and real-time database of cars with defects requiring repair.  Part 2 will feature some Bad Order documents.

Running extra...

Recently-arrived junk mail included Harvey`s restaurant coupons.  I was surprised to find an accurate representation of Kingston`s rail system included on the coupon page.  It even includes tracks that have been removed. (click to enlarge)
OK, so I added the red print on the map for clarity.  Obviously Harvey`s printer is using an old map.


Robert in Port Townsend said...

Okay, Eric, even Reader's Digest has a note about the cover photo! So satisfy my curiosity about the header photo.

I remember as a young man living in Prince Rupert, hearing the Road Foreman of Engines remark, "They (train crews) may run the trains, but we (mechanical & MOW) make it possible!"

This photo is rich with details, from the mountain range in the background, to what are they doing to the panel truck ...

Eric said...

Reader's Digest, really? I don't have a location for that CPR photo, Robert, although it could be Revelstoke or possibly Field.

I knew when I was preparing the Bad Order posts and I came across the photo that it would make a good header. Enjoy it while it's there, because the life of my header photos is fleeting.

Thanks for your comments, very true.