Vancouver Wharves  (Kinder Morgan) has sold SW1500 820 to WRIX for resale.

The E&N Railway resurrection is still in need of funding. The Bridge and trestle Bridge engineering audit is in and the foundation needs $5.4 million dollars to start the upgrades, on top of the 15 million they already have received from government grants and wish to secure the funds before the October start date. The work will not begin until the final 5.4 million dollars is in the hands of the foundation which will delay the rejuvenation of the passenger rail line. The trains were expected to pull into the stations next spring but until the money is lined up, the rails will remain void of trains.  As well VIA have no Budd Cars to spare at this time. The pair that had been on the island, VIA 6135  (stored Unserviceable in Sudbury, ON) and 6148 (Currently in White River service out of Sudbury, ON).  The Budd cars at IRSI for overhaul are not being worked on due to the company being bankrupt.   RDC4’s 6250 and 6251 are destined for Sudbury.   It is likely this proposed Vancouver Island VIA passenger service may get one VIA RDC 1 and a VIA RDC2  from the IRSI facility in New Brunswick at some point.

The Stewart Southern Railway (SSR) has leased three GP15D locomotives: 

  • CEFX 1504 arrived on the SSR June 26th,

  • CEFX 1505 arrived on the SSR June 29th

  • CEFX 1503 arrived on the SSR June 21st. 

On July 11th Mark Perry noted two blue HELM SD40-2 (HLCX 6296 and HLCX 7193) and red painted HLCX 6298 sitting at the CN’s Symington Diesel Shop today in Winnipeg. All are destined to The Pas for lease to Hudson Bay Railway (HBRY), and were released from Metro East Industries in Illinois in late June.  It is interesting to note, HLCX 7193 was built at GMD London in 1979, as BN 7193,  One other, HLCX 8163 is also earmarked for leased to HBRY, and arrived at Symington diesel shop July 12th.  In late July, HLCX 7204 and 7233 arrived on the HBRY and both of these SD40-2’s were also built by GMD-London 1979.


Former CP caboose No. 434667 sits on the spur to the former Saskatchewan Wheat Pool elevator at Canora, Saskatchewan on CN's secondary mainline July 7, 2012.  This caboose was owned by On-Track Railway Operations in Edmonton, AB and was for sale on their website for just over $15000 and has now been sold.

Mark Perry photographed activity at the triple diamond at Symington (Outside Winnipeg, MB) as inbound  CN #302 on X track with the IC 2702, pulls into Symington Yard coming from Rivers MB.  CN #801 on X3 track waits for #302 to pull into the yard.  CN #302’s tail end clears the Greater Winnipeg Water District (GWWD) diamond and #801 is on the pull, getting a roll by inspection by the car department.   GWWD MLW RS-23 200 with a 6 car work train, clumps across the diamond, headed for Shoal Lake MB as GWWD caboose 1360 brings up the markers.

In other shortline news, CP has conveyed a portion of the Winnipeg Beach Subdivision from mile 26 to mile 40, to the Lake Line Railroad.  They are using GMTX 98 (an EMD-built SW1001).

On July 20th, the TransCAER local organization (Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta) presented a training seminar for local first responders in the Prince Albert area. On display was their trademark tank car that contains an interior that goes over the details of how a tank car operates. Carlton Trail also provided one GP10 for fire crews to examine. The TransCAER officials were very open to railfans and stated that they encouraged the community to come out and also take part in the exercises because most often it is the public that are first to witness a train derailment. In a nutshell, the purpose of these exercises is to have the community prepared and knowledgeable of what to do in the case of a hazardous spill/derailment. The first three photographs will be of the tank car.

On June 25th, a huge storm rolled through Prince Albert, SK leaving the city without power for nearly 24hrs. During this period of violent weather, over 200 000 people in the province lost power. In the Prince Albert area, over 40 000 people went without power when several high voltage transmission lines were completely destroyed by a massive plough wind. In the path of the plough wind were also seven hopper cars stored on the Birch Hills Spur by Carlton Trail Railway. Plough winds are often mistaken for tornados because of their destruction and speeds (up to 240km/hr.) but are distinguishable because the damage is often displayed in a straight line. The hoppers damaged were lifted off their trucks and flipped into the ditch on their side. Very little damage was actually done to the cars and CTRW had the cars back on the rails within a few days. These photos were taken on June 26th.     

On July 24th, SRY was testing their newly leased CITX SD40-2 3032 in New Westminster, with SRY 384, 381, and 382.  CITX 3032 had been stored with two more CITX SD40-2's that still remain at the CP's Port Coquitlam shops.  SRY are leasing CITX 3032 and will be utilized to facilitate operating over the steep grades encountered on the SRY Fraser Valley Sub.  Currently they are investigating electrical grounds, and once that’s sorted out it will be put in service.


SRY Vignettes

On January 19th 2012, Andy Cassidy snapped SRY GP9 135 and Slug 121 sitting idle at the east end of the yard at New Westminster, BC next to the scale.  SRY 135 powers the still fully equipped Control Cab Slug SRY 121 (a former EMD-built  GP9). Note the “Zero Emission Locomotive” decal on the carbody.  The yard sign ports the new SRY logo.


On July 1st, Doug Sword took the following images at the Goderich-Exeter (GEXR) Shop in Goderich, ON.   Included are FEC SD40-2 709, GEXR GP40 4046, GEXR SD45T-2 9392, and the most recent arrival GEXR SD40M-2 2652, which was undergoing repairs in July.


Doug also snapped leased LLPX GP38-2 2236, Rail America (RLK) GP9-4 4001, and RLK GP40 4095 at Goderich on July 1st

The two RaiLink F-units (RLK 1400-1401), the blue GEXR GP35 3834 and green and yellow GEXR GP40 4046 are still stored in Goderich  as well. Rumor suggested they were to go to Sterling Rail, but to date they have not moved.


In Georgetown, Ontario July 11th, Conor Megaffin caught  GEXR SD45T-2 9392 leading GEXR 432 (CN K43231-11) by the 154 year old Georgetown train station.

Don’s Froth reports the 'Goderich Elevators' have been sold to a Winnipeg Company...'Parrish & Heimbecker'.   LINK:

GEXR is currently seeking  a contractor for projects on the Guelph sub next year, with the to be work completed by May 2014.

  • CTC SYSTEM: Design, Supply, Install, Test and Commission of a Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) system consisting of 5 sidings, two interface points with CN, one interface point with CP's Bucke Diamond, intermediate signals and CTC repeaters on the GEXR Guelph Subdivision between Mile 30.00 and Mile 119.12.
  • CROSSING UPGRADES: Design, Supply, Install or Modify/Upgrade, test and commission Automatic Warning Device systems.

 GEXR owner, regional railroad operator RailAmerica Inc. has attracted takeover interest from rival transportation companies

Genesee & Wyoming Inc. and Watco Companies LLC, according to people familiar with the negotiations. Several infrastructure funds and Canadian pension funds active in infrastructure investments are also evaluating bids for RailAmerica, which has a market value of more than $1.2 billion. The Jacksonville, Florida based company, which is majority owned by Fortress Investment Group, said in May it has hired Deutsche Bank to consider a sale and was in preliminary talks with potential buyers. The interested parties had submitted initial bids several weeks ago and the sale process is well into the second round, according to the sources.

Joseph Bishop was in Garnet, Ontario July 9th and bagged a trio of  GP20D’s  (CEFX 2019 - 2014 - 2015) working the Southern Ontario Railway yard.  Later in the day he caught CEFX GP20D 2006 leaving long hood forward with a cut of cars for US Steel in Nanticoke.  With traffic now up, SOR has added another train to handle the increased amount of cars they are now moving.

Later the same day, Joseph snapped RMPX GP40-2LW 9431 sitting in the small yard in Hagersville, ON.  The locomotive is on lease from RailCar Limited to Rail America owned SOR, and recently the nose and end were patch painted to cover the former CN markings.

Several years ago General Chemicals of Amherstburg, ON went out of business and it was the thought their locomotive had been scrapped. It is now been located and Larry’s Truck Electric (LTEX) is buying the unit lettered B15 (nee-CN SW1200RS 1318).

On July 21st, Dan Murrell snapped US Steel Canada Lake Erie Works SW900 #455, (ex-STELCO SW900 #87), being moved on CN as “NREX 412” in the yard at Brantford, ON.  Brantford is an interchange point for the Southern Ontario Railway (SOR) which services the Lake Erie Works at Nanticoke, On.  US Steel Canada Lake Erie Works 455  is returning from NRE-Capreol following repair work and repaint.   

Another view of US Steel Canada Lake Erie Works #455 moving as NREX 412. 

 Steve Lucas caught CASCO GMDIu 1105 at Cardinal, Ontario July 3rd .

It took many months of rebuilding and testing at Ontario Northland’s North Bay’s Locomotive Shops once obtaining quite a bit of damage from a derailment on the Temagami  in April 2011, but SD75I 2102 is once again back in service and making her debut on Englehart to Cochrane’s 213. Mike Robin captured 2102 in her debut revenue run at mile 2 of the Devonshire Subdivision July 13th.

Mike Robin submitted this roster shot of former BC Rail APU (now APU 206) captured at Cochrane's coach yard July 20th.

A rail company in southern Ontario (TGR Rail Canada) says it has approached the provincial government about buying parts of the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission,  Their proposal has  upset those trying to keep the rail system in public hands.  TGR Rail Canada said it wants to purchase the freight, rail and refurbishment division. Company president Kevin Street said the company's proposal would keep the office in North Bay and would protect the positions of current employees for five years.  "To go in there and send everybody packing doesn't make any sense,” he said. “We actually need [existing employees] to help us create a viable entity."  TGR Rail Canada said it wants to purchase Ontario Northland's freight, rail and refurbishment division.  The proposal does not include the Northlander passenger train which has been losing money and ridership for some time.   

National Steel Car (NSC) of Hamilton, Ontario continues to construct ore cars for Sept Iles, QC lettered TSMX.  The ore cars have a 236000 Load Limit and a 28-9 foot inside length.   As well as more TTX 3-pac container well cars (FCA) in the 787300-series.  “FCA” is the AAR car description nomenclature for Flat Container Articulated -  the same type of code used for box cars XM or XP, LO for covered hoppers, GB for gondolas, etc.

On July 23rd, Genesee & Wyoming Inc. (GWI) announced they had purchased  RailAmerica, Inc. (RA) The  agreement under which GWI will acquire RailAmerica for an all cash purchase price of $27.50 per share. GWI’s acquisition of RailAmerica will combine the two largest short line and regional rail operators in North America,  strengthening GWI’s ability to serve its industrial customers and Class I railroad partners. In addition, the combination should yield significant synergies and provide strong leverage to the eventual recovery of the U.S. economy, while creating a powerful platform for future industrial development along railroads in the 37 U.S. states in which GWI will do business.   GWI owns Canadian shortlines: Huron Central, Quebec-Gatineau and the St, Lawrence and Atlantic.  RA owns Canadian shortlines; Goderich-Exeter, Southern Ontario railway, Ottawa Valley Railway, and Cape Breton & Central Nova Scotia. 


Brand new Port of Montréal RPRX RP20BD 1004 arrived at St-Luc Yard on CP 253-07. Guillaume Levasseur-Raymond snapped her at the coal chute after parking his CP consist.   

Correction to last months report:  The CEFX SD9043MAC’s leased to Cartier did not get renumbered at CADRAIL. Lorence Toutant caught them departing Montreal July 2nd with their CEFX numbers. They are destined for the port at Ogdensburg, NY for transfer by ship to Port Cartier, QC.  The units will be needed until their new EMD SD70ACe’s (to be numbered 50-54) which will arrive later this year.

One of the CEFX SD9043MAC’s on board the ship at Ogensburg, NY  July 24th. (via Dave Woodall with thanks).

Oxford Express Tourist Train

By Patrick Tailon

 On May 25th, 2012  the Oxford Express (OSX) ran its first trip to the Coaticook Valley, in Quebec Eastern Townships. Every Friday to October 26th, the train has two departures from Sherbrooke (13h00 and 18h30 ) to Coaticook with a stop of 45 minutes at the Beaulne Museum.  Ridership is on the increase, with 9200 seats available for the season available and 4200 seats pre-sold. The Coaticook Valley run is a pilot project for this season and with this increased demand, the line is in negotiation with the St-Lawrence and Atlantic Railroad and Tourism Coaticook for more runs in the region on next summer.

FLNX FL9 484, acquired by OEX is still in Coteau, QC for inspection and will be delivered in July 2012.  In the meantime, they are using their MLW switcher … M420TR #26.  Another project under study for the OEX, is the possibility of creating a run to Lac Mégantic, QC  following a new agreement with Tourism Mégantic for a new tourist train in the region. As well MMA are working to refurbished the line between Eastman and Bromont  and the plan is to have the train go all the way to Bromont, QC.

Michel Daoust snapped the entire TSH roster in one shot at  Schefferville, QC  July 12th.  The view from the front of shop  looking north-east towards the main line and siding in front of the yard office.

Nosing at the door of the TSH shop in Schefferville June 12th was this pair (TSH 702 and 601) are at the shop for their quarterly inspections. (Photo not taken by Michel, but by one of his dedicated employees).



Montreal Maine and Atlantic (MMA) is purchasing (and leasing) ten locomotives due to increased traffic, (oil trains from CP, etc).  

The locomotives to be acquired by MMA are:

Ex-New Hope & Ivyland (NHRR) C39-8 8202, 8207, and 8208. ex-NS same numbers, nee-CR 6004, 6012, 6014.  ex-CN SD40-2 5364, and 5374 now owned by MMA will be returned to service.  As well MMA will lease two or three CP SD40-2’s when ever an oil train is running, with the CP units numbers continually changing.

As a new service is now required at Sherbrooke, QC, and the MMA will need extra power.  The MMA will purchase two F40PH’Sthat had been in Montreal Commuter service AMT F40PH 270 and F40PHR 293, which have been removed from commuter service, have to be re-geared and then sent to Sherbrooke, QC as helpers.  Enroute from Montreal to Farnham  St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC, Francois Jolin snapped Montreal Maine & Atlantic (MMA) train #2 catching the first rays of the morning sun as it crosses the Richelieu River on July 12th with AMT F40PHR 293 in the consist!  Leased CP SD40-2’s 5928, 5926, MM&A (ex-ATSF) C30-7u 3603, MMA (ex-BAR) GP7u 23, and AMT F40PHR 293.

Francois Jolin submitted the following great shots:

 The Windmill Components Train at Farnham, QC July 4th.

 A Crude Oil Unit Train departs Farnham, QC July 4th.  

 The Crude Oil Unit Train at Brookport on July 8th

 A  Crude Oil Unit Train at Milan QC on June 8th. (All Francois Jolin)

As can be seen, the crude oil trains from Western Canada to the J.D. Irving refinery at St. John, New Brunswick have brought even more color and GE six-axle units to the New Brunswick Southern Railway and Eastern Maine Railway.  Run through power off Montreal, Maine and Atlantic is now going all the way from St. Jean, QC to St. John, NB.  MM&A C30-7u 3000 (ex-ATSF) leads four units and one box car (the spacer car so that crude oil cars are not adjacent to the road engines) en route back to Brownville Junction, Maine on 16 July 2012.  (From Paul Donovan with thanks).


Iowa, Chicago & Eastern SD40-2 6450 ex-BCOL 749) trails MM&A C30-7u 3000 (ex-ATSF) through Danforth, Maine, followed by MM&A C30-7 5026 (ex-BN) and MM&A C30-7u 3609 (ex-ATSF) on July 16th.  The units are returning west after delivering one of the new crude oil trains off Canadian Pacific at Montreal.


© CRO August 2012