Texas Eagle Engineer

2658 views
37 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    February, 2016
  • 508 posts
Posted by JPS1 on Thursday, September 07, 2017 9:03 PM

longhorn1969

When did the TE get a woman engineer? Is she new? 

Yes, they change crews in Austin. I believe the San Antonio crew brings it up in the morning and just chill in Austin to take 21 back home to San Antonio. Where they rest up at I do not know. Pretty easy gig if you ask me. 

I have seen female engineers on the Texas Eagle for at least ten years.  I don't know whether the engineer I referenced above is new, but she clearly had command of the men around her as she waited to take control of the train.

The San Antonio based engineer that brings No. 22 from San Antonio to Austin probably has to get up around 4:30 a.m. to get to the station in time for any prep work prior to the Eagle's 7:00 a.m. departure for Austin.  If the train is on-time, he arrives in Austin at 9:31 a.m.

I am told that the San Antonio engineer goes to a hotel until it is time to go back to the station to take Number 21 back to San Antonio.  What she does in the interim is her choice.  If Number 21 is on time, it departs San Antonio at 6:30 p.m.  It is scheduled to arrive in San Antonio at 9:55 p.m.   Frequently it arrives in an hour or more ahead of schedule.  But on some occasions it does not get to the Alamo City until after midnight.  

Even if the engineer gets home by 11 p.m. or midnight, it is a pretty long day. Moreover, hanging around an Austin hotel for nearly seven or more hours every couple of days has to be a bit boring.  I would not call this assignment an easy gig. 

Rio Grande Valley, CFI,CFII

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,206 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, September 07, 2017 9:38 PM

JPS1
 
longhorn1969

When did the TE get a woman engineer? Is she new? 

Yes, they change crews in Austin. I believe the San Antonio crew brings it up in the morning and just chill in Austin to take 21 back home to San Antonio. Where they rest up at I do not know. Pretty easy gig if you ask me.  

I have seen female engineers on the Texas Eagle for at least ten years.  I don't know whether the engineer I referenced above is new, but she clearly had command of the men around her as she waited to take control of the train.

The San Antonio based engineer that brings No. 22 from San Antonio to Austin probably has to get up around 4:30 a.m. to get to the station in time for any prep work prior to the Eagle's 7:00 a.m. departure for Austin.  If the train is on-time, he arrives in Austin at 9:31 a.m.

I am told that the San Antonio engineer goes to a hotel until it is time to go back to the station to take Number 21 back to San Antonio.  What she does in the interim is her choice.  If Number 21 is on time, it departs San Antonio at 6:30 p.m.  It is scheduled to arrive in San Antonio at 9:55 p.m.   Frequently it arrives in an hour or more ahead of schedule.  But on some occasions it does not get to the Alamo City until after midnight.  

Even if the engineer gets home by 11 p.m. or midnight, it is a pretty long day. Moreover, hanging around an Austin hotel for nearly seven or more hours every couple of days has to be a bit boring.  I would not call this assignment an easy gig. 

Given the times you are quoting there would be two sides to the assignment.  One to go on duty Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday; the other going on duty Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and the following Monday.  There is insuffient rest time after arrival back at the home terminal to protect On Time operation the following day.

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    February, 2016
  • 508 posts
Posted by JPS1 on Friday, September 08, 2017 1:06 PM

BaltACD
 Given the times you are quoting there would be two sides to the assignment.  One to go on duty Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday; the other going on duty Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and the following Monday. There is insuffient rest time after arrival back at the home terminal to protect On Time operation the following day.

The San Antonio based engineer does not work continuous days.  You are correct; he or she is off the next day.  I am not sure how many days a week they work San Antonio to Austin and return.

Two perspectives lead me to believe that it is not an easy a gig.  It is a very long day.  And it includes at least seven hours of sitting around.  When I was working, it drove me crazy to have to sit around with nothing to do for long periods.

I have asked several of the San Antonio conductors that I know reasonably well why the San Antonio based engineers only go as far as Austin, when the conductors and assistant conductors go all the way to Fort Worth, but I have never gotten a good answer from them.

Rio Grande Valley, CFI,CFII

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,206 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Friday, September 08, 2017 1:22 PM

JPS1
 
BaltACD
 Given the times you are quoting there would be two sides to the assignment.  One to go on duty Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday; the other going on duty Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and the following Monday. There is insuffient rest time after arrival back at the home terminal to protect On Time operation the following day. 

The San Antonio based engineer does not work continuous days.  You are correct; he or she is off the next day.  I am not sure how many days a week they work San Antonio to Austin and return.

Two reasons led me to argue that it is not as easy a gig as supposed.  It is a very long day.  And it includes at least seven hours of sitting around.  When I was working, it drove me crazy to have to sit around with nothing to do for long periods.

I have asked several of the San Antonio conductors that I know reasonably well why the San Antonio based engineers only go as far as Austin, when the conductors and assistant conductors go all the way to Fort Worth, but I have never gotten a good answer from them.

Different crafts with different contracts.  In many locations, Engineers and Conductors do not work between the same points on various runs.  Each contract, and it's side letters, take into account both the physical characteristics encountered as well as the preferences of people covered by the contract or side letter.

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    September, 2010
  • 975 posts
Posted by Electroliner 1935 on Friday, September 08, 2017 1:52 PM

Did Amtrak inherit the host roads contracts or did they create their own districts since many trains use multiple RR.?

  • Member since
    June, 2011
  • 600 posts
Posted by NP Eddie on Friday, September 08, 2017 10:40 PM

Electroliner 1935:

The answer to your question is "no". Amtrak has created their own operating crew districts and those operating employees are Amtrak empolyees. Former railroad employees had to resign from their respective railroads in order to continue with Amtrak. Each crew district is unique and is created by negotions. An example is the Milwaukee crew district handles the Empire Builder from Chicago to Winona, MN. A St. Cloud, MN crew handles that train from Winona to St. Cloud and another St. Cloud crew handles the train from St. Cloud to Minot. The next crew is from Shelby, Montana to either Minot or Spokane. I do not know if the Seattle or Portland crew bases handle the EB from Spokane to Seattle or Spokane to Portland. The crews' at St. Cloud make two east trips (St. Cloud to Winona) and one west trip from St. Cloud to Minot then have two days off and resume the cycle of trips.

Ed Burns

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • From: KS
  • 740 posts
Posted by SFbrkmn on Saturday, September 09, 2017 3:23 PM
Extra boards under union agreements are guarantee boards. If an employee stays marked up on a 24 hr day midnight-midnight by being available for work and doesn't layoff, even if that worker does not get can on duty call, he/she will still get paid by drawing day of guarantee. This is a lower pay than if one would have worked but it still generates revenue. There are clauses built in on preventing abuse of the system. Only two layoffs are allowed in a pay half. Anything over that, the guarantee will be voided. Extra boards are pretty good jobs to work ,as depending on the type of board one may be marked up on, you could go several days in a row without working and yet still get paid--just by being available to work.
  • Member since
    February, 2016
  • 508 posts
Posted by JPS1 on Saturday, September 09, 2017 10:40 PM

SFbrkmn
Extra boards under union agreements are guarantee boards. If an employee stays marked up on a 24 hr day midnight-midnight by being available for work and doesn't layoff, even if that worker does not get can on duty call, he/she will still get paid by drawing day of guarantee. This is a lower pay than if one would have worked but it still generates revenue. There are clauses built in on preventing abuse of the system. Only two layoffs are allowed in a pay half. Anything over that, the guarantee will be voided. Extra boards are pretty good jobs to work ,as depending on the type of board one may be marked up on, you could go several days in a row without working and yet still get paid--just by being available to work. 

Thanks for the explanation.  I appreciate it. 

Rio Grande Valley, CFI,CFII

Join our Community!

Our community is FREE to join. To participate you must either login or register for an account.

Trains free email newsletter
NEWS » PHOTOS » VIDEOS » HOT TOPICS & MORE
GET OUR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER DELIVERED TO YOUR INBOX
Connect with us
ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER

Search the Community