Tonnage Rating of Locomotives

nw-mailing-list at nw-mailing-list at
Thu Aug 3 09:06:06 EDT 2006

About 15 years ago, the Vice President-Mechanical had to complete
a study on how the department's assets were used. He elected to
show the horsepower per ton assigned to 1- TOFC trains 2- Merchandise
trains 3- Hopper trains, 4- locals, and 5- coal trains. In developing
this statistic, it became apparent that Bluefield and Roanoke were
regularly dispatching coal trains as much as 1800 tons over the tonnage
rating. Bear in mind that both Bluefield and Roanoke knew the
tonnage being dispatched, but apparently ignored the instructions in
the timetable. It was brought to the attention of the Operating Dept.
Within a year, the Operating Department arbitrarily raised the
tonnage ratings by 10%.
Harry Bundy
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