July 26, 2016 |
More than a dozen men bustled around the elevated railcar, attaching wires and sensors to it like doctors placing monitors on a heart patient. And like a heart patient undergoing a stress test, SEPTA is going to push the railcar to the max. "This is exceptional," said SEPTA senior project engineer Greg Buzby of the tests he and other engineers are performing on a Silverliner V, one of 120 cars pulled from service due to a faulty part. Over Independence Day weekend, SEPTA found a fatigue crack in one of the Silverliner V's equalizer beams, a piece that transfers the car's weight to its axles.
July 23, 2016 |
SEPTA's board chairman said Thursday that he has no second thoughts about buying the railcars that were recently pulled from service due to flaws found in one of their key components. "I was very comfortable with those guys being able to do the job," said Pasquale "Pat" Deon, referring to Hyundai Rotem, which received the contract to build 120 cars 10 years ago. Deon was board chairman at the time. Hyundai Rotem's railcars, the Silverliner V's, were delivered from 2010 to 2013 and this month were revealed to have fatigue cracks in equalizer beams, pieces that transfer weight from a car to the axles.
July 19, 2016
ISSUE | SEPTA How thorough are regular inspections? Two editorials gave credit to SEPTA for having detected the structural fault in commuter railcars before there was any injury ("No time for slow route," July 7; "SEPTA trains' tortuous track," Wednesday). For that, all train travelers are blessed. I wonder, however, how thorough safety inspections were when, after seeing that one coach was out of kilter, SEPTA determined that 115 of 120 Silverliner V coaches had structural cracks and all of them needed to be taken out of service immediately.
July 14, 2016
The wholesale failure of SEPTA's new commuter railcars has been inconvenient, unsettling, and, to the extent transit officials cast it as the public's problem rather than theirs, exasperating. But it was not entirely unforeseeable. The tortuous process that led to SEPTA's star-crossed purchase of the 120 Hyundai Rotem cars now sidelined with structural flaws produced more warning signals than an active railroad crossing. To wit: SEPTA preliminarily awarded the quarter-billion-dollar contract to a Hyundai-led consortium in 2004 even though the agency's staff ranked the proposal last of four bids.
July 10, 2016 |
It's increasingly likely SEPTA is facing the worst-case scenario for its diminished rail fleet. As a result, riders will see depleted service at least through Labor Day, officials said at Friday afternoon's news conference. While SEPTA hopes to ease the crunch with some borrowed railcars, "it's not looking good for a repair and a quick return to service" for the stricken vehicles, said Jeff Knueppel, SEPTA's general manager. SEPTA pulled 120 Regional Rail cars from service, a third of its fleet, after discovering cracks in key load-bearing beams last week.
July 4, 2016 |
SEPTA said Saturday that it had removed 120 Silverliner V passenger cars - nearly a third of its passenger railcar fleet - from service due to a "significant structural defect," and that the cars would remain sidelined until repairs are made. The decision raised the prospect of considerable commuter delays when work schedules return to normal after the July 4 holiday weekend. SEPTA spokeswoman Carla Showell-Lee said that the defects had been discovered Friday and that the decision to pull them from service was made in a conference call of senior SEPTA managers.
March 18, 2015 |
CITING THE GROWING number of railroad cars carrying crude oil through Philadelphia and the state, and a handful of recent derailments, Sen. Bob Casey yesterday called for the passage of federal legislation aimed at increasing railroad safety. Casey, joined at a City Hall news conference by City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson, said that although the recent local derailments did not result in oil leakage or injuries, Congress should be proactive in preventing more serious accidents in the future.
September 5, 2014 |
After meeting behind closed doors Wednesday with representatives of Alstom, the company that is rebuilding PATCO's commuter rail fleet, PATCO officials said the first six rebuilt cars will get their final tests this month. PATCO president John Hanson declined to predict when paying passengers might begin traveling in the long-delayed cars. That date has been steadily pushed back. When Alstom Transport Inc., a French company, won the $194 million contract in December 2010 to rebuild PATCO's 120 railcars at its Hornell, N.Y., factory, PATCO officials said the project, including design, construction, and delivery, would take about five years.
November 22, 2013 |
The first of PATCO's long-awaited refurbished railcars have arrived in Lindenwold for final testing and will be carrying paying customers by February, PATCO officials said Wednesday. PATCO passengers have endured months of crowded rides as the commuter rail agency has shipped cars to a Hornell, N.Y., factory for a $194 million makeover. The entire fleet of 120 cars is supposed to be back in service by October 2016, despite delays in delivering the first cars. So far, 26 cars have been sent to the New York factory for overhaul.
September 28, 2013 |
Even before they're built, Amtrak's new locomotives run through Philadelphia. Seventy new "Cities Sprinter" locomotives, worth $466 million, have begun to roll off a Sacramento, Calif., assembly line, complete with components made by Philadelphia-area workers in local factories. The locomotives will operate on the Northeast Corridor between Boston and Washington and on the Keystone Corridor between Philadelphia and Harrisburg. They will carry with them seats made by USSC Group Inc. of Exton and steel handrails and tie-rods from Bentech Inc. of Philadelphia.