Auto Train derailment

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Auto Train derailment
Posted by Lithonia Operator on Wednesday, April 8, 2020 1:25 PM

Are there any theories about what caused the auto carriers to derail, on the AT on 3/27?

(Was there a thread about this that I missed?)

No passenger cars derailed. Could an auto carrier have derailed because of excessive swaying? Aren't they kind of top-heavy? I assume they are double- or triple-deck.

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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, April 8, 2020 3:06 PM

Lithonia Operator
Are there any theories about what caused the auto carriers to derail, on the AT on 3/27?

(Was there a thread about this that I missed?)

No passenger cars derailed. Could an auto carrier have derailed because of excessive swaying? Aren't they kind of top-heavy? I assume they are double- or triple-deck.

I have not seen any official theories, with that being said the NTSB published the cause of a CSX derailment near Alexanderia, VA in 2018.

https://www.progressiverailroading.com/federal_legislation_regulation/news/NTSB-Subgrade-fill-failure-led-to-CSX-train-derailment-bridge-collapse--60172

The pictures of the Auto-Train derailment gave a similar appearance.  Sub-grade failure sounds reasonable to me based on the pictures I saw.

What I don't know is if the track is now owned by CSX or Sun Rail? 

 

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Posted by Lithonia Operator on Wednesday, April 8, 2020 9:43 PM

Do I assume correctly that the auto carriers would be by far the heaviest pieces of rolling stock in the train, including the the engines?

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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, April 8, 2020 11:05 PM

Lithonia Operator
Do I assume correctly that the auto carriers would be by far the heaviest pieces of rolling stock in the train, including the the engines?

No they are not necessarily the heaviest - however, they are the last cars of the train to pass over a point.  That I have seen it on videos it tends to operate with 15 passenger cars and up to 35 auto racks.  CSX has a 50 car limit on the train.

Operation of the train will create vibratory effects on the track structur and road bed and if a underground sink hole is developing can cause the sink hold to collapse.  The entire state of Florida is known for its sink holes, as limestone is the 'hard rock' that the state is on top of.

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Posted by Lithonia Operator on Thursday, April 9, 2020 12:29 PM

An engine is heavier than a loaded auto-carrier?

I'm thinking that a passenger car could not be.

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Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, April 9, 2020 3:22 PM

Lithonia Operator
An engine is heavier then a loaded auto-carrier?

I'm thinking that a passenger car could not be.

Engines weigh in in the 260K range +/-.

Superliner cars are in the 150K range +/-

Autoracks empty are in the 120-130K range +/-

I don't know if the Amtrak autoracks are bi-level or tri-level - figure 5 vehicles per level per railcar. Figure 5K pounds per vehicle or less.

CSX CW44AC Heavy's weigh in at 432K.

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Posted by aegrotatio on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 11:59 AM

Most auto racks are tri-level.  There is a number of bi-levels that are reserved for larger vehicles.

 

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