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European volcano reprecursions

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European volcano reprecursions
Posted by blue streak 1 on Thursday, April 15, 2010 6:39 AM

The Icelandic volcano has shut down much of scandanavia and great brittian. The question is how will the rail systems of Europe handle the sudden influx of passengers and priority air freight?. My previous memory of of volcano diversions is that the cloud will be long lasting (several weeks) and will spread to middle Europe. Just one more argument for the USA not to put all their eggs into the airline LD travel basket. Also no idea how long the vocano will keep erupting/.

Our European posters need to keep us informed!!!

 

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Posted by beaulieu on Thursday, April 15, 2010 10:03 AM

Here is a BBC story about the chaos and its affect on Eurostar.

BBC story

 Unfortunately the French appear to have a railway strike going on, it doesn't have any direct effect on Eurostar, but connections to regular French trains may be disrupted.

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Posted by carnej1 on Thursday, April 15, 2010 11:08 AM

blue streak 1

The Icelandic volcano has shut down much of scandanavia and great brittian. The question is how will the rail systems of Europe handle the sudden influx of passengers and priority air freight?. My previous memory of of volcano diversions is that the cloud will be long lasting (several weeks) and will spread to middle Europe. Just one more argument for the USA not to put all their eggs into the airline LD travel basket. Also no idea how long the vocano will keep erupting/.

Our European posters need to keep us informed!!!

 

With North America to Europe flights being affected I'm sure rail traffic through the Trans-Atlantic tunnel will surge..

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Posted by Great Western on Thursday, April 15, 2010 12:00 PM

 I will be surprised if this ash cloud disappears quickly.  It will cause many issues for European travel and also outside Europe.

Luckily for me an item of rolling stock for my garden railway has just arrived from the States so there will be no delay to that item. Wink

I am not sure whether it is passenger aircraft and freight or just passenger aircraft but I had intended to order some back copies from Kalmbach of Trains and Classic Trains magazines.  That is now on hold. Shock

So as you see, the effects this volcano will will be worldwide.

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Thursday, April 15, 2010 12:19 PM

Great Western
I am not sure whether it is passenger aircraft and freight or just passenger aircraft

Great Western: It is all turbine aircraft pure jets or turboprops. Recip engines may work but will need some kind of filter that I would not want on my aircraft.

Filters are going to be a problem for the rails and automobiles once the ash cloud gets to the ground. When Mt. Saint Helens blew the then BN had to replace diesel filters every 2 - 3 days if I recall correctly. The snow ingestion problem that occurred on the Chunnell trains will also need addressing as ash particles may or may not be very similar to fine snow. That is because every volcano is different in its ejecta.

I imagine that aircraft will have to be rerouted by way of the US SE to the Azores and Spain if the volcan continue.  But if winds change then Spain and middle Europe may get the ash. It all depends on the upper level winds, how much ash, and how much clearing of the air occurrs (depends on ash size and rain). Worse case happening is the volcano continues with the ash going global shutting all air travel down in the northern hemisphere. (not much chance I hope). 

 

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Posted by beaulieu on Thursday, April 15, 2010 12:53 PM
So far the Ash hasn't been falling to the ground in Europe, so land transportation hasn't been affected, that could change of course.
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Posted by ButchKnouse on Thursday, April 15, 2010 12:53 PM

Here's a tip I learned from somebody who got Mount St. Helen's ash on their car in 1980. DON'T BRUSH IT OFF. This will scratch the paint. Use a garden hose, with NO NOZZLE. Just use the hose and rinse the car off from the top down.

 But that's absolute worse case here in the US. Hopefully there's a few Europeans out there who could use this knowledge.

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Posted by trainboyH16-44 on Thursday, April 15, 2010 4:24 PM

 I'm amazed at the comment from a  resident of Cork admonishing the airlines by saying that "they should be prepared for this sort of thing" and that modern technology should be able to handle it.

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Thursday, April 15, 2010 5:55 PM

Good point about washing the automobiles off with an open hose. The comment that technology could solve the ash problem is nuts. Sand especially glass and iron particles just will not work in any aircraft engine plus the ash can score windshields and everything else on an airplane.

A few more items that Europeeans may have to deal with. These items all depend on the ash mix such as sand glass, rock (granite etc) iron content, particle size, Sulfuric acid,  etc.

1. GPS may not work because iron can scatter the signals.

2. Sattelite communications can be cut off but fortunately there is a lot of fiber optic cable all over the world.

3. Military aircraft resupply trips cut off.

4. Helicopters especially vulnerable.

5. And if the volcano continues there may be a shortage of filters until manufacturing speeds up.

6. AC traction motors may perform better than DC but who knows for sure?

7. Certain ash mixes may short out transformers and/or transmission lines?

Any other ideas out there?

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Posted by tree68 on Thursday, April 15, 2010 6:53 PM

Under the heading "that danged dust gets in everything,"  computers and disk players (especially CD/DVD/Blu-Ray drives where tolerances are tight), copy machines and laser printers (iron being the problem there - the drums operate using electromagnetic forces), and most especially, lungs of all types, human and animals. 

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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, April 15, 2010 8:59 PM

Just goes to show we need more ocean liners:

http://www.ssunitedstates.org

 

 

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Posted by RudyRockvilleMD on Thursday, April 15, 2010 9:27 PM

The Icelandic volcanic ash erruption has caused both intercontinental flights and flighta in Great Britain and Europe to be canceled. Travelers in Great Britain and Europe rely more on trains more than air, and the trains there are packed. What effect will the volcanic ash have on railroad transportation in Great Britain and Europe?   

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Posted by beaulieu on Thursday, April 15, 2010 10:03 PM

RudyRockvilleMD

The Icelandic volcanic ash erruption has caused both intercontinental flights and flighta in Great Britain and Europe to be canceled. Travelers in Great Britain and Europe rely more on trains more than air, and the trains there are packed. What effect will the volcanic ash have on railroad transportation in Great Britain and Europe?   

 

So far ash fall has been limited. The biggest problems with rail transportation is the lack of spare equipment. To use a British term many trains are totally Wedged.

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Posted by Cricketer on Friday, April 16, 2010 1:50 AM

Indeed. Longer distance services are already running at about capacity in terms of numbers of trains actually operating, and because those to Scotland in particular run at 125 mph it isn't simply a case of rustling up old carriages, because their max is about 90mph.

The only place where there's spare daytime capacity is the communter routes, moslty into London. Even then extra trains need extra crews, though to some extent train lenghths can be kept up by not uncoupling multiple units.

Other key point for the UK is that there's only one link for non-drivers to the Continent, which is Eurostar. Eurostar haven't got spare trains sitting around, and are going to be pretty ful anyway as the schools go back this Monday. Of course if the restrictions on train types get relaxed then we could have had French TVG services running through the tunnel to London, and the French are more generous with spare capacity than the British are. Of course some of France is already ashed over, so many trains there will already be full, esp those to Belgium and the Netherlands.

The ferries and Eurotunnel tend to be vehicle based. Continental Europe is somewhat better off re land links, but the further north you go (and into the ash plume) the more flying is the only quick, or even slow way to get south. Overland is very slow indeed, and often requires crossing water.

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Posted by Norm48327 on Friday, April 16, 2010 12:29 PM

 Air filters would also be a problem for aircraft with reciprocating engines, but very few transport category planes have them today. Recips are mostly light singles and twins incapable of crossing the Atlantic. Flying any aircraft in that soup would be akin to flying in a sandstorm; a 600 MPH one at that. All the paint would be gone from the airplane long before it's destination, and turbine engines would be trashed from the abrasives in that cloud.

I'm a retired aircraft mechanic, and IIRC, in 1980 when Mt. St. Helens blew it's top there were a couple of planes that had flameouts at altitude before we realized iit was a no-no to fly into the cloud.

Most European railroads, being electric should not be heavily affected, but for diesels, as previously mentioned, a good supply of air filters should be kept at hand.

Norm


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Posted by BNSFwatcher on Friday, April 16, 2010 2:42 PM

A friend in Estonia told me that that country is about at a stand-still.  He thinks there will be big economic repercussions.  Don't buy Euros, at this time!  Booze manufacturers are good bets!

Hays

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Friday, April 16, 2010 3:38 PM

Cricketer
Indeed. Longer distance services are already running at about capacity in terms of numbers of trains actually operating, and because those to Scotland in particular run at 125 mph it isn't simply a case of rustling up old carriages, because their max is about 90mph.

A news room site said that on Thursday Virgin ran 3 extra sections London - Glascow and east coast ran 1 London - Edinburgh? 

Probably better than our Amtrak could do.

 

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Friday, April 16, 2010 6:21 PM

Two items that i came across and is why I do not trust so much of the media.

1. there is now more lightning activity in the ash cloud that indicates more ash.

2. A couple of the networks said Eurostar was full but a check as of 1850 EDT from London showed the Sat trips had one or more fare levels open on 5 trains each to Paris and Brussels. Sun was 17 - Paris and 9 Brussels. Appears that people are booking at the last minute.

Now some questions for our European friends. Since there are fewer trips on weekends if there becomes a necessity can the required crews and serviceable trains sets be available? I notice that after Jan 3rd several trains no longer run.

Have any tests been made to couple two complete train sets together (not the present split capable) to double space? Does anyone one know capacity of a train set? 

Of course as long as the present trains have space spread out through the day that do not fill then why run more capacity?

I can imagine that the location of Brussels will cause more demand for seats to there in the future because of the travelers to the nordic countrys, Germany, Poland, and Russia.

 

 

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Posted by beaulieu on Friday, April 16, 2010 8:00 PM

blue streak 1

Two items that i came across and is why I do not trust so much of the media.

1. there is now more lightning activity in the ash cloud that indicates more ash.

2. A couple of the networks said Eurostar was full but a check as of 1850 EDT from London showed the Sat trips had one or more fare levels open on 5 trains each to Paris and Brussels. Sun was 17 - Paris and 9 Brussels. Appears that people are booking at the last minute.

Now some questions for our European friends. Since there are fewer trips on weekends if there becomes a necessity can the required crews and serviceable trains sets be available? I notice that after Jan 3rd several trains no longer run.

Crews would be more likely a problem, plus weekends are used for maintenance.


Have any tests been made to couple two complete train sets together (not the present split capable) to double space? Does anyone one know capacity of a train set? 

Physically two trainsets can be coupled, but the only time it is done, is to tow in a disabled trainset. A Eurostar trainset consists of 18 vehicles, so it is very long, as long as station platforms.Two coupled would have to separate to allow passengers to embark and disembark.


Of course as long as the present trains have space spread out through the day that do not fill then why run more capacity?

I can imagine that the location of Brussels will cause more demand for seats to there in the future because of the travelers to the nordic countrys, Germany, Poland, and Russia.

 

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Saturday, April 17, 2010 8:28 AM

Latest check shows almost all Eurostar sold out today but tomorrow still OK.

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Posted by MStLfan on Saturday, April 17, 2010 4:49 PM

Tidbits:

- John Cleese, British actor/comedian used a taxi all the way from Oslo Norway to Bruxelles Belgium (ca 1500 km) @ €3500. He was doing his show about him being poor after his recent divorce....

- Thalys runs with 2 coupled trainsets as well as some extra trains this weekend between Amsterdam and Paris. It was a busy day for travel to Germany. Passenger in Amsterdam were advised to go to Utrecht as there was still capacity at the ticket office there.

- There is an exhibit of royal trains in the Dutch National Railway Museum in Utrecht. It included the current Dutch royal train. Included because the Queen, crown prince and his wife are now using it to visit Denmark where queen Margarethe turned 70.

- I used the Berlin (Germany) - Amsterdam international train for domestic travel thursday and there was an Englishman explaining to the homefront that it would take a while before he would be home. He came from somewhere in northern Germany and traveled via Amsterdam to Bruxelles where he hoped to get a train to the French/Belgian border where he would take a taxi to Calais where he hoped to be able to take a ferry (apparently they operate 24/7). The Stena Line ferry between Hook of Holland and Harwich (UK) was sold out friday, don't know about the DFDS ferry between IJmuiden and Newcastle.

- Dutch airspace is closed till 8 am sunday, Belgium, Germany and France have closed their airspace until at least 2 PM on sunday.

- UEFA will decide on monday if next week's Champions League and Europa League football games will go on. This is because of airtravel problems not because of ash.

- Meanwhile, a high speed train in Germany, on the Cologne - Frankfurt line, lost a door. This door landed on / against an opposing train and injured 6 people. Service on the line was severly disrupted.

- Lufthansa has made a deal with Deutsche Bahn and air traveller can change their air ticket for a travel voucher with DB. DB meanwhile uses every available train and personnel.

- Prognosis of the ashclouds can be seen here: http://bit.ly/buK6l9; the volcano, Eyjafjallajokull, can be seen here: - http://bit.ly/biwlti

greetings,

Naomi

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Posted by MStLfan on Saturday, April 17, 2010 5:35 PM

- Meanwhile, a high speed train in Germany, on the Cologne - Frankfurt line, lost a door. This door landed on / against an opposing train and injured 6 people. Service on the line was severly disrupted.

Pictures here: http://bit.ly/d7Rdcq

greetings,

Naomi

For whom the Bell Tolls John Donne From Devotions upon Emergent Occasions (1623), XVII: Nunc Lento Sonitu Dicunt, Morieris - PERCHANCE he for whom this bell tolls may be so ill, as that he knows not it tolls for him; and perchance I may think myself so much better than I am, as that they who are about me, and see my state, may have caused it to toll for me, and I know not that.
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Posted by blue streak 1 on Saturday, April 17, 2010 8:22 PM

Naomi:  Thanks for the update .

I just checked Eurostar vs their 13 Dec - 3 Jul schedule that they still have some seats available but almost no business class. 2 extra trains show London - Brussels 1304,1734. 3 extras Paris -London @ 1343, 1443, 1843 and returns at 0757, 1000, & 1331. A couple of these extras were fill ins that took slots that were only used over the X-mas holidays. To know If these were actual extras and not a schedule change I will leave to others.

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Posted by beaulieu on Saturday, April 17, 2010 9:32 PM
Eurostar reported that they moved 58,000 passengers through the Channel Tunnel on Friday which is a new record by a substantial margin.
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Posted by blue streak 1 on Saturday, April 17, 2010 10:34 PM

beaulieu
Eurostar reported that they moved 58,000 passengers through the Channel Tunnel on Friday which is a new record by a substantial margin.

Own any of its stock? Anyone?

 

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Posted by steinjr on Saturday, April 17, 2010 11:38 PM

 Regarding the ash cloud impact in Europe on trains: staff at the airport express trains between Drammen, Norway (some 30 miles west of Oslo) and the Oslo main airport at Gardermoen (some 30 miles or so east of Oslo) has received advance notice that they will likely be furloughed - seeing that there aren't all that many people who wants to take the train to the airport right now, and seeing that this might be going on for a while.

 Airport express train schedules are down to 1/6th of normal between downtown Oslo and the airport - one train per hour instead of one train every 10 minutes.

 Edit: the news just reported an update Sunday morning our time. Management of the airport express train company has realized (possibly after a brief and rather pointed glare from the minister of transport) that their train sets could be used as standard passenger trains.

 They have now now withdrawn the notice about furloughing 200 of their staff and is now offering to lend or hire out their excess train set capacity to the national railroad company to increase passenger train capacity for the duration of the event.

 Stein

 

 

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Posted by MStLfan on Sunday, April 18, 2010 4:05 AM

Stein,

What type of rolling stock is used for the airport express? Can it be used in international service to Stockholm or Göteborg/Malmö in Sweden. Or will they be used in services around Oslo and, ultimately, freeing up stock that can be used because it has the required standards?

Or are we talking purely domestic service, Norway is a pretty and big country after all.

greetings

Naomi

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Posted by steinjr on Sunday, April 18, 2010 11:26 AM

 

marcimmeker

Stein,

What type of rolling stock is used for the airport express? Can it be used in international service to Stockholm or Göteborg/Malmö in Sweden. Or will they be used in services around Oslo and, ultimately, freeing up stock that can be used because it has the required standards?

Or are we talking purely domestic service, Norway is a pretty and big country after all.

Well, the trains sets used for the airport express trains are three-car EMUs (Electric Motor Units) - they are clasified as type 71 train sets in Norway.The airport express service has 16 sets, and would need to retain 3 or 4 sets to cover the airport even at the present service level (1/6th of normal).  So the maximum that could be made available is 12 sets, with 168 seats each.

 The type 71s from the airport express service are the equivalents of the type 73 fast long distance train sets (except the type 73s have four car sets). The type 73s are used for the Oslo-Stavanger (south coast express), Oslo-Bergen and Oslo-Trondheim, plus Oslo to Gothenburg in Sweden.

 Conditions are changing rapidly, so the news about the 71s being put into service as passenger trains may already be outdated.

 Wind directions have changed over Iceland, and the wind is now blowing the ash clouds south of most of Norway. All our airports north of Bergen are now open.

  Several ferry flights from Iceland seem to be are inbound at short intervals heading for Vaernaes airport by Trondheim in Mid-central Norway, and some flights from the US are also inbound - Vaernaes being the southern-most big airport open for regular airline traffic in northern Europe at the moment.

 If the wind direction holds, they expect Oslo airport to be reopened for traffic from the west some time tomorrow.

 Conditions further south on the continent remains somewhat gray.  According to http://www.flightradar24.com/ it seems like almost all transatlantic traffic is coming in or leaving from Spain and Italy at the moment.

 So I guess we'll see what happens next.

 Stein

 

 

 

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Sunday, April 18, 2010 8:51 PM

mondays eurostar booking appear to be slightly open for almost all trips except Business class. Could not find any extra sections listed but Brussels - London both ways appears the tighest in available seats.

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Posted by beaulieu on Sunday, April 18, 2010 9:59 PM

blue streak 1

Own any of its stock? Anyone?

 

 

No public stockholders, its owned by SNCF, SNCB, and London & Continental (aka British Government). The British Government wants to sell out their share, DB and SNCF want to buy it.

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