Saturday, November 17, 2012

NJT parked equipment in areas forecast to flood

A third of its locomotives and a quarter of its rail cars lost to flood damage as a result.

Hundreds of millions of dollars in damage, massive harm to post-hurricane recovery, and quite possibly billions of dollars in total economic damages, all because a handful of utter fools couldn't pay the proper attention to their jobs and ensure that the equipment was moved to somewhere that was not a predicted flood zone. I am hoping that it was merely a lack of consideration for the hurricane that led to this and not active incompetence that moved equipment from safer areas to these lower lying areas. Words completely fail me in that latter scenario.

1 comment:

  1. NJT's preparation and response to the storm has been a complete disaster. This is especially clear in comparison to the (formerly) much-maligned MTA, which has received accolades for its restoration of subway service, but whose commuter rail properties were also well-managed before and after the storm.

    I'm guessing NJT simply underestimated the storm, did not have a plan to evacuate its equipment, and simply hasn't engineered it's yards to deal with flooding.

    New Haven, for example, received a ten foot storm surge during the storm pushing high tide 14 feet above normal. Metro-North's major rail yard in New Haven sits on land that was once a large chunk of New Haven Harbor and is prone to flooding in heavy rains, yet it remained relatively dry with no loss of equipment. Simply spending money to improve the drainage in the yard, as has been done by the state of CT over the past few years, has saved millions of dollars and allowed the New Haven Line to offer almost regular service a few days after the storm (and once sufficient repairs were made to the catenary system).


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