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Side Tracks

Short-line rail companies continue to carry their weight on routes that otherwise might have been abandoned The train grinds to a halt, and engineer Eddie Pitchford breaks out his cell phone. Two locomotives with coal cars in tow sit idle in a wooded area north of downtown Athens, and the train’s progress rests on the word of an anonymous dispatcher 300 miles away. “Some days we get hung up here,” Pitchford said. The Hartwell Railroad freight train must cross CSX Transportation’s main rail line running between Atlanta and Wilmington, N.C., before it can proceed into downtown Athens. From his cell

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February 2005 Wreck Roundup

The man charged in a deadly January Metrolink derailment pleaded not guilty to 11 counts of murder, according to various news sources. California authorities initially said Juan Manuel Alvarez parked his SUV on train tracks to commit suicide, but changed his mind and abandoned his vehicle. Eleven people were killed in the wreck and hundreds more injured. One person was killed and at least 50 others injured when an express passenger train derailed Feb. 28 in eastern Bangladesh, The Associated Press reported. According to reports, the Joyantika Express derailed en route Dhaka. The train was traveling from Sylhet, a city