Sunday, April 01, 2007

Repairs of Second Track Underway

Repairs are underway to recover from the recent fire that destroyed the double track Sacramento River wooden trestle and disrupted transcontinental rail traffic. The superb crews of the Union Pacific have rebuilt a single track bridge in record time, allowing partial restoration of service, but in order to accomodate the heavy rail traffic over the Sierras, all westbound Amtrak trains will temporarily be diverted from the regular Sacramento station to instead stop at the California State Railroad Museum platform used under more normal circumstances for museum visitor train rides. This will continue until the work underway to reopen the track through the retired original summit tunnel (#6) can be completed allowing east and westbound trains to operate simultaneously.

Officials interviewed by the Times explained that the State intends to maximize utilization of historic resources in its emergency preparedness planning. This approach will also be utilized in Southern California next month when the long delayed seismic retrofit project will necessitate the temporary closure of all freeways in Los Angeles, and use of the Pacific Electric Red Cars in their place using rubberized steel wheels to allow the older cars to operate on surface streets.