Feds: Possible al-Qaida Plot Against NYC Transit System

November 28, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

NEW YORK — Federal officials are warning of a possible al-Qaida terror plot against New York City’s transit system. The Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation said officials have received a “plausible but unsubstantiated” report indicating a threat during the upcoming holiday season. According to investigators, al-Qaida members may have discussed targeting New York and any such plot could include using suicide bombers or explosives placed on subway and passenger rail systems.. The conversations took place in late September. Despite the warning, officials said they have no specific details to confirm the plot has developed beyond

Honda Recognizes Norfolk Southern for Performance Excellence

November 28, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

NORFOLK, Va. — American Honda Motor Company Inc. has awarded Norfolk Southern Corp., in competition with all assembly plant and port locations shipping Honda vehicles, the 2008 Performance Excellence Award for Rail Origin Carrier of the Year for service provided at their Lincoln, Ala., automobile manufacturing plant. The award recognizes transit performance, inventory control and empty rail car supply, and audit performance. Norfolk Southern began its service to the Lincoln plant in 2003 when the construction of the rail-served vehicle loading facility was completed. “Norfolk Southern is honored to receive this award, which recognizes the hard work and dedicated efforts

CP Holiday Train Begins Journey Across Seven States for Food Pantries

November 28, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

ROUSES POINT, N.Y. — On the eve of thanksgiving, the residents of Rouses Point had much to be thankful as Canadian Pacific held its first 2008 Holiday Train event in the U.S. The Holiday Train will eventually make its way to Carpio, N.D., on Dec. 15, raising food, money and awareness for food pantries along the way. In all, thousands of people in more than 50 communities in New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin and North Dakota will experience the Holiday Train’s important mission in the fight against hunger. At the same time, a second identically-decorated Holiday Train will

Poll: Safety Concerns Drive Seven in Ten Rochester Residents to Oppose Increased Freight Traffic through Minn. City

November 28, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

ROCHESTER, Minn. — Safety, potential accidents and quality of life concerns are prompting nearly 70 percent of Rochester residents to oppose plans to increase freight train traffic through their city, a new survey shows. The survey of more than 500 Rochester residents, conducted October 8-16, also shows strong public sentiment for area elected officials to resist plans to expand freight rail traffic in the city. The Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) recently acquired the Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad (DM&E) and associated tracks through downtown Rochester. During the acquisition, CP officials outlined plans to upgrade tracks through Rochester in anticipation of

FRA Announces Disaster Relief Funding for Small Railroads

November 26, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON — The Federal Railroad Administration is accepting applications from states for $20 million in grant funding to help small Class II and Class III railroads that sustained infrastructure damage as a result of recent natural disasters. Under the Railroad Rehabilitation and Repair Grant Program, federal grant funds may be used to repair and rehabilitate damage to railroad infrastructure sustained due to hurricanes, floods, and similar events in counties declared to be major disasters by the President from Jan. 1 to Nov. 6. Among the possible uses of the funds are restoration of railroad rights-of-way, bridges, and signals. Prospective grantees

BNSF Adds Third Rail Line through Cajon Pass

November 26, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

FORT WORTH, Texas –BNSF Railway has completed construction of a third main rail line through Cajon Pass in Southern California that will increase capacity on BNSF’s Chicago to Los Angeles Transcontinental (Transcon) route from 100 to 150 trains a day. The $90 million project adds almost 16 miles of third main track to BNSF’s route into the Los Angeles Basin. Cajon Pass is located between the San Gabriel and San Bernardino mountain ranges, just north of the City of San Bernardino. Approximately 75 to 100 freight and passenger trains currently traverse this route on a daily basis. Each intermodal train

FRA Announces Funding for Proposed Maglev Projects East of the Mississippi River

November 26, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON — The Federal Railroad Administration is now accepting applications from states or state designated authorities for $45 million in grant funding for proposed magnetic levitation (maglev) projects located east of the Mississippi River. The SAFETEA-LU Technical Corrections Act of 2008 limits the eligible projects to those in or between: Pittsburgh, Baltimore-Washington, and Atlanta-Chattanooga. FRA may award one or more grants which can be used for preconstruction planning activities and the capital costs of the fixed guideway infrastructure.

Traveling Between N.J. Transit, SEPTA Easier Than Ever

November 26, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

NEWARK, N.J. — Just in time for the busy holiday travel season, N.J. Transit and SEPTA  began a six-month effort promoting the ease of traveling between the two systems — including trips between Philadelphia and New York — with a simple connection at the new Trenton Transit Center. “We’ve made it easier than ever for customers to transfer between N.J. Transit and SEPTA, including a $79 million investment in Trenton Transit Center and new joint ticketing options,” said N.J. Transit Executive Director Richard Sarles. “Now, we want to get the word out and encourage customers to take advantage of the

FRA Issues Final Rule on Advanced Train Braking Technology

November 26, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON — Advanced brake technology will enable locomotive engineers to have better train control, lower the risk of derailment, and allow trains to safely travel longer distances between required brake tests under a new federal rule, announced U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary E. Peters. “The concept is simple, better brakes allow trains to operate more safely,” Peters said, noting that the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) final rule on Electronically Controlled Pneumatic (ECP) brakes will facilitate the widespread deployment of this technology by railroads and railcar owners. Peters explained that ECP brakes provide numerous safety and business benefits compared to conventional air

Amtrak Selects Transportation Industry Veteran as President & CEO

November 25, 2008 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON — Amtrak’s Board of Directors has selected Joseph Boardman, a nationally recognized transportation industry professional, to become president and chief executive officer of the company, effective Nov. 26. Boardman offers nearly 34 years of experience in the surface transportation industry at city, county, state, and federal government levels; most recently as the administrator at the Federal Railroad Administration, officials said. He succeeds Alex Kummant, who resigned Nov. 14. “In an attempt to maintain the momentum at Amtrak, while finding a permanent CEO candidate, the board has appointed Mr. Boardman for one year, but will conduct a search in the

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