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Trains During Winter Operation

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Was talking with a friend about this a few days ago and I was curious. How do operations continue and maintain consistent service during big snowfalls? Are the rails plowed with a special vehicle or do the trains just run often and keep the train clear?  What about the switching systems?

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OC Transpo does have a rail plow/blower for the Confederation line, i remember seeing a tweet about it last winter. And i do believe it'll be a mix of those. Running trains to keep tracks clear (especially during ice storms) and for quick build ups or if they need to stop, and there's build up bring out the rail machine. I know there are parts of the tracks that are heated (like platforms) so i wouldn't be surprised if the switches have heating systems to avoid freezing.

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Good Day.

See my post on 2018 October 20 in the - Adapting with the Climate - thread. several posts and pics discussing this, from the FEDCO updates in early 2018.

@ corynv ... yes, absolutely correct. And yes, switches especially HAVE to be kept clear, and so are and will be maintained by heaters, and actual physical maintenance as necessary (picks, shovels, and hot flamers). You can see the effect the heaters have had on a switch in one of the pics.


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The article doesn't go into too much detail as to what happened. A train got stuck in the snow. But there is a limited number running simultaneously so the natural clearing of snow by passing trains is reduced. They also don't mention if the maintenance vehicles to clear the track were circulating either.

Could be a case of the line not being operated at the needed level to achieve sufficient snow removal and clearing.

Speaking of this, is there a snowplow integrated at the ends of the vehicle (similar to the LINTs on the Trillium line) or something mounted underneath the front to clear snow?

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Good Day.

Very few details on what happened, or how much (if any) running / testing they were doing. Even at the best of the reports, only a few trains.

AFAIK, the Spirits have NO plow attachments at, near, or under the front of each LRV. It would seem they depend purely on the air pressure shock wave created by their passage - which would require frequent trains at high speed to be anywhere near effective at high snowfall rates - which it would be apparent RTG did not have.

More, it would seem the snow clearance machine they do have has caused a problem, hitting and disabling at least two of the train locator sensor detectors between the rails at undisclosed locations.

So, overall rating of performance in this most excellent of test situations - POOR to LOUSY !


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Good Day. The YouTube video :

Yah.... I see it..... the best I can say is - highly misleading !

Looks to me like thay are maybe referring to the shape of the snout acting to enhance the pressure wave effect. My reply - BS ! Maybe they meant to state or imply that there was an option of a plow available. If so, they should have animated / shown it. Still BS.

In the remainder of the animation and video before and after, look at the substructure and clearances of body to top-of-rail. Plain bodywork - no plow structure visible. And I have not seen any plow structure in any of the videos of the Spirits posted - only what the animation and video you reference shows - plain bodywork.

The T-Line Talents and Lints both had and have actual hard-structure plows. IIRC, the FLIRTs have a plow as an option - we will see what Jimmy bought. But all these are much heavier vehicles, with more power / inertia / momentum / brute force available to push snow.

Still NoJoy!

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