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View Full Version : Different Railroads on the same KCS Route?



dricketts
December 21st, 2009, 09:35 PM
There is a particular stretch of route close to where I live that is owned by KCS. It stretches from Kansas City then south, along the Missouri-Kansas border, through Joplin, Mo, and then into Arkansas.

I routinly see KCS, CSX, BNSF, and UP power along this route near my home. Sometimes alone or in a mix of the same consist. According to the Missouri Dept of Transportation only KCS has trackage rights to this route in Missouri.

Can someone please explain the railroad industry's business model that explains this?

Thanks...

Tokkyu40
December 21st, 2009, 10:10 PM
KCS has the track rights, but since they rarely run it at full capacity other roads might pay them to run through their territory.

:cool:Claude

dricketts
December 21st, 2009, 10:37 PM
Yes that makes sense but why do I see consists with CSX/KCS power, BNSF/CSX power or KCS/CSX/BNSF power?

bl4882
December 22nd, 2009, 06:33 AM
Interconnecting railroads often run through trains that will travel over two or more roads. These trains may share motive power under motive power pooling agreements where each road will commit several locomotives to the pool. In that case you might see the home road's engines teamed with one or more engines from the connecting roads to form one locomotive from one terminus to the other without an engine change. The idea is to move the trains over the several roads in the most efficient way possible. Railroads that are temporarily strapped for power may also lease engines from roads that are over supplied with it. These are good excuses to have engines from foreign roads on your layout.

Found this link you might be interested in: http://books.google.com/books?id=mELYxgFA8AYC&pg=PA64&lpg=PA64&dq=railroad+motive+power+pooling&source=bl&ots=6wmD5dQtKE&sig=vvUnA44LwP6zzdMx7je6me6OWKk&hl=en&ei=WrgwS7jcH5TesgPPsODFBA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CBkQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=railroad%20motive%20power%20pooling&f=false

Bernie

StorkNest
December 22nd, 2009, 09:11 AM
Bernie's got it.

To explain further, this "Power Pooling" has been going on for quite a while, just not many historical pictures of them so when people think of trains, they figure only one railroad runs a train together. Some of the old power pools, when railroads merge, get continued by the merged roads. In Bernie's link, that is from a New York Central book, the picture shows the Rock Island and NYC engines on the same train, when Penn Central was formed, they would continue the pooling with RI and PC trains, same when Conrail came to be.
The chart there shows most of the pools NYC was in with certain railroads and where they went between.
Southern Pacific and Baltimore & Ohio pooled as well.
Boston & Maine pooled with Maine Central and Central Vermont.
Central Vermont, Grand Trunk and rarely Canadian National could be seen together in New England once.
Pools also can have some wild things happen in them. B&O once leased some SD40s to Central of New Jersey but these sometimes wound up on B&O rails so you can have B&O locomotives mixed with CNJ SD40s. It is described in a book I have that once when SP and B&O did a pool, one of the CNJ SD40s (doesn't say which one) got mixed in so you had a CNJ engine go way out west!:hehe:
There was also a recent Trains magazine, I forget which but within this year, that had an article specifically about a common KCS and CSX pool, where it went and what it carried, several photos with the article that showed various KCS and CSX engines pulling the train at different times.

dricketts
December 22nd, 2009, 09:39 AM
Thanks guys. That gives me a clearer understanding of how the industry works. Now I know what terms to work with when I'm doing some google research.

I'd love to get my hands on the Trains article that StorkNest spoke about. The KCS & CSX common pool if anyone knows where to find it...

jadebullet
December 22nd, 2009, 07:49 PM
Yup, when I railfan Fleetwood, PA, I constantly see NS trains with BNSF power.

StorkNest
December 22nd, 2009, 10:36 PM
Thanks guys. That gives me a clearer understanding of how the industry works. Now I know what terms to work with when I'm doing some google research.

I'd love to get my hands on the Trains article that StorkNest spoke about. The KCS & CSX common pool if anyone knows where to find it...
Might have had the wrong magazine. None of the recent Trains lists it from their website. Railfan & Railroad cover of March 2009 looks like a KCS & CSX pool on a Schneider Intermodal so that could be it.
I know I saw it recently at a model railroad shop, I was there in the past week looking at magazines and books.

JCitron
December 24th, 2009, 01:19 PM
Yup, when I railfan Fleetwood, PA, I constantly see NS trains with BNSF power.

I remember seeing this too in the old Conrail days. Conrail locomotives mixed in with NS locos on a taconite trains heading to Allentown. This was back in the early to mid 1990s while out railfanning with my cousin in Blandon.

Sometimes with power pooling, you'll see a home road engine on the front and the others behind. This is due to signalling requirements particularly if the home road has CTC and cab-control signals that are not compatible with the pooled road's engines.

John

dricketts
December 29th, 2009, 06:01 PM
Another thought... what about signaling. How does foreign power follow the signaling of the home road? Do crews have to be trained on signaling for more than one railroad or does foreign power always have a home crew?

dricketts
January 15th, 2010, 01:26 AM
Here is a perfect example. This is in the KCS yard in Kansas City, Mo.

http://i.imagehost.org/0109/kcs_csx_up.jpg

Ronayne
January 15th, 2010, 07:39 AM
Those locos may not run together. If all run together at once, thats one 'eck of a train.

dricketts
January 15th, 2010, 10:13 AM
I was just wondering why they would all be in a KCS yard?

I guess there could be a number of reasons. Some of those stated earlier. It might be a common practice in my area. There are also large Union Pacific, Norfolk Southern, and BNSF yards close by.

norfolksouthern37
January 15th, 2010, 11:18 AM
Another thought... what about signaling. How does foreign power follow the signaling of the home road? Do crews have to be trained on signaling for more than one railroad or does foreign power always have a home crew?

normally the crew does not leave their territory, just the locomotives. a train crew is only certified to run over their 'home' territory. that territory can be very small or several hundred miles, depending. so if you are a train crew and you work a certain division or subdivision on a railroad, you dont just go to another railroad, or even another subdivision without knowing it and being familiar with it. you wont drive a train from say jacksonville to los angeles. sure the train goes that far, but the crew does not.

far as the locomotives being mixed in. it was pretty much explained in the pool power thing. and what you see in the yard is that power being serviced. its got to take on servicing someplace. i live on the NS, and i see UP and BNSF all the time (and their heritage too). they run this way because its very fast to just hand off the motive power with the train heading north. and some of the NS units i see here one day end up out in california in the next few days. a long way from NS territory. otherwise, theyd have to bring the train in, switch out the power take the power back to their own yard... it would just be a nightmare for a railroad to only operate its own equipment when it relies on connecting railroads to get goods moving. just how it works. its not just common practice in your area, but all over the place.

dricketts
January 15th, 2010, 02:23 PM
Thanks for the additional info norfolksouthern37.

It sounds like each railroad realizes it's in everyone's best interest to share resources. For the business model that explains sharing resources, I guess that's why the V.P.'s of finance get paid the big bucks.

magickmaker
January 15th, 2010, 02:56 PM
Model Railroader answered a question about this some time ago. Let me add my two pence in here also.

Sometimes you'll have situations where it's just too costly for a railroad to build its own route through an area. Cajon pass is a perfect example of this. So, what sometimes will happen is one railroad will seek trackage rights from another.

Nine times out of ten it works out that the "Host" railroad is the only one allowed to make stops to industries on its railroad, with the "Guest" railroads just using it to get from point A to point B. Typically the railroads will share the maintenance costs of the stretch that trackage rights are on, Usually with a 50/50 agreement.

However there have been exceptions to this. It's possible in some cases for a railroad to have trackage rights to service a major buyer or customer that its own tracks can not reach. In those situations it's usually a case where the industry is only located a few miles away from the junction, and it is deemed cheaper to just let the guest railroad's local trains access it that way, as opposed to interchanging between the two railroads. You see this many times when it comes to dealing with large grain elevators and even some port and dock areas.

brickbuilder711
January 17th, 2010, 03:17 AM
That's why FEC hands off their three geeps to CSX on the routine K712-K711 run. It's a lot quicker than sending CSX power which isn't available for at least 70 miles (in shorthanded CSX Hialeah Yard) or for 150 miles at Winston or as good as 180 miles in Taft or Yeoman/Uceta Yards.