Fw: NS Trash Train Service - Trains News Digest for Friday, April 9, 2021

NW Modeling List nw-modeling-list at nwhs.org
Fri Apr 9 14:02:19 EDT 2021

Important Trash Train News.
Thanks to Ed M.

Norris Deyerle

Blue Ridge Chapter, National Railway Historical Society Chairman of Virginia's Rail Heritage Region Partners

Info: www.blueridgenrhs.org<http://www.blueridgenrhs.org>

744 Chinook Place

Lynchburg, Virginia 24502-4908

Cell: 434-851-0151

From: Mayover, Edward <mayover at p-rsl.com>
Sent: Friday, April 9, 2021 1:14 PM
Subject: Trains News Digest for Friday, April 9, 2021

NS Trash Train consigned to the dumpster of history
April 9, 2021

After 27 years, Roanoke Valley operation to be replaced by trucks

[Black locomotive pulling cars of trash through fall colors]
Norfolk Southern’s Trash Train passes through Waburn, Va., in November 2016. After 27 years, the operation ended earlier this month. (Casey Thomason)

ROANOKE, Va. — For more than a quarter century, at approximately 5:30 p.m., a Norfolk Southern crew would report in Roanoke and start train V60, commonly known as the “Star City Stinker” or “Trash Train.” No more.

The Monday-through-Friday operation would start just east of Roanoke’s famed East End Shops and travel 30 miles west to a landfill near Ironto, Va. A turn job, for 27 years, the train would take loads up and empties back, with a single vintage EMD locomotive hauling anywhere from five to 15 cars of trash.

On April 2, 2021, the Trash Train came to an end, as the engineer knocked off the brakes one last time and pulled from the landfill with all 27 cars in tow bound for Roanoke behind SD40-2 No. 3412. After the crew tied up, train V60 was abolished and the Trash Train became a part of railroad history .

Making this train noteworthy, it would travel west up the former Virginian from Salem Connection (milepost V-250.9) to Bradshaw (milepost V-264.3) before splitting off on the 4-mile-long Bradshaw Branch. The former Virginian, known today as the Whitethorne District, is primarily a directional-running mainline that hosts heavy tonnage eastbound trains, with westbound trains using the former N&W. Rarely does a westbound trek against the flow of eastbound trains on the Whitethorne District unless there’s an issue on the N&W side; the Trash Train was the one exception.

The Trash Train began in 1993 when the Roanoke Valley Resource Authority built a new landfill in Montgomery County Northwest of Ironto in the Roanoke Valley, as well as 27 trash cars capable of hauling roughly 65 tons of trash each. Just west of Furnace Crossing by the East End Shops at the start of the Blue Ridge District to Crewe, the authority constructed a small facility to load the trash onto railcars.

With the end of the Trash Train, the Bradshaw Branch is slated to be removed this summer, with the authority turning it into a road to truck all waste material into the landfill.

Progress continues on Mark Twain Zephyr restoration
By Steve Smedley<https://www.trains.com/authors/?_article_author=steve-smedley> | April 9, 2021

Wisconsin Great Northern working to return train to operation after more than 60 years

[Man painting inside of passenger car]Wisconsin Great Northern Railroad president Greg Vreeland works on painting the interior of the Becky Thatcher, once the baggage car of the Mark Twain Zephyr trainset. Behind Vreeland is one of several educational panels describing the Zephyrs. (Steve Smedley)

TREGO, Wis. — Wisconsin Great Northern continues to make progress in its effort to restore the Mark Twain Zephyr to operation. The railroad acquired the four-car articulated trainset, plus a spare car from the original Pioneer Zephyr, in 2020. Built in 1935, the train is the fourth of nine complete Zephyr trainsets built by the Budd Co. in Philadelphia, Pa.

[Outside of passenger car with sign describing restoration]Signs outside each car describe the Mark Twain Zephyr restoration process. (Steve Smedley)

Work to turn former baggage car Becky Thatcher into a walk-through interpretive learning center is well underway. The car will feature the history of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy’s Zephyr program as well as the history of the Mark Twain Zephyr. High-quality graphics describing the Zephyr program are being presented in wall panels.

Work is also progressing on the Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn cars is also progressing, with tile installed in vestibule and restroom areas. An air conditioning unit was added to round-end observation car Tom Sawyer on April 2; it is now undergoing testing. New seating is being installed in both cars.

[Informational displays inside passenger car]
Interpretive panels inside former baggage car ‘Becky Thatcher’ describe the history of the nine Zephyr train sets built by the Budd Co. (Steve Smedley)
“It was a bit of a chore, but we figured out how to mount the new swivel parlor chairs” for the Tom Sawyer, Wisconsin Great Northern owner Greg Vreeland said. He added that the cars have ‘’good bones,’’ referring to the train’s stainless steel construction.

Metrolink’s Wiggins named as new LA Metro CEO

Stephanie Wiggins, currently CEO of Los Angeles-area commuter railroad Metrolink, will become the first female CEO of LA Metro, the Los Angeles-area transportation agency which operates buses, light rail, has a hand in highway projects and is one of the five county transportation agencies which oversees Metrolink. Her four-year appointment, with a board option for two one-year extensions, was announced Thursday evening by LA Mayor Eric Garcetti following ratification by the LA Metro board. Wiggins, the first Black and first woman to lead Metrolink, joined the commuter rail agency in 2018 from LA Metro, where she was deputy CEO, playing a key role in the passage of Measure M, a transit funding ballot initiative; previously, she had overseen vendor/contract management and development of the toll express lines on Interstate 10 and Interstate 110 in the downtown L.A. area. She began her transit career with the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority. She succeeds Phillip A. Washington, who announced earlier this year that he would leave the agency in May after six years as CEO [see “Digest: LA Metro CEO Washington to step down,”<https://www.trains.com/trn/news-reviews/news-wire/digest-la-metro-ceo-washington-to-step-down/> Trains News Wire, Feb. 3, 2021]. Wiggins was the subject of the Trains Interview in the June 2019 issue of the magazine; online bonus material from that interview is available here<https://www.trains.com/trn/news-reviews/news-wire/25-the-trains-interview-metrolinks-stephanie-wiggins-part-1/> and here<https://www.trains.com/trn/news-reviews/news-wire/26-the-trains-interview-metrolinks-stephanie-wiggins-part-2/>.

Metrolink receives FRA grant for campaign to deter suicides

Metrolink has received a $59,000 grant from the Federal Railroad Administration to fund a campaign to deter suicides along its route. City News Service reports<https://www.pasadenastarnews.com/2021/04/08/metrolink-receives-59000-grant-for-campaign-to-deter-suicide-on-train-tracks/> the commuter railroad says suicides account for 40% of the incidents of trains striking pedestrians along its system between 2017 and 2019. The grant will fund an outreach program focused on training and public engagement, as well as targeted efforts at four “hot spots,” two in Orange County and two in the San Fernando Valley. The commuter rail agency will work with psychologists from the University of Denver Transportation Research Center on the outreach program, scheduled to last 12 months.

MTA officials hold ‘rolling news conference’ to promote use of transit for sporting events

New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority held its first “rolling news conference” on Thursday to promote use of public transit to attend sporting events, with MTA CEO Patrick J. Foye and Long Island Rail Road President Phillip Eng staging the event on a subway train and LIRR train bound for the New York Mets’ home opener. In the race to see who would arrive first, Eng’s train was first to reach the platform at the stop for Citi Field, although Foye was first to enter the stadium. More on the event and details on the agency’s service to the Mets’ ballpark are available here<https://new.mta.info/press-release/mta-holds-first-ever-rolling-news-conference-and-chairman-appears-jumbotron-urge-fans>.

MTA Holds First-Ever Rolling News Conference and Chairman Appears on Jum...

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