Watco (CBH) Movements

 
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

Came out of Dudinin last week, but supposed to be the Kulin time this week.
8888

Hi Simon,

Thanks for that, I did manage to head down to Kulin last Thursday morning, and made it for 9am, but they looked like they were only just starting to load the rake of wagons. The first wagon was parked underneath the loadout bins, and all the wagons had the roof hatches open for business. I waited round till about 9.40, but they still hadn't made a move on anything (no-one on the loadout gantry either), so I headed north to see what else was around.

I managed to catch CBH001 (I think the number is right, or the memory is gone!) just north of Narembeen heading south, with about twenty wagons in tow. I stayed alongside the railway to Muntadgin, then again through to Merredin, and I caught CBH004 (as above about the number) heading south from Merredin to Muntadgin (I assume). The loco had about twenty wagons again. In West Merredin yard, there was the final twenty wagons or so going through the trans-shipping point with the track-mobile pushing/pulling them through.

I have a couple of questions about the operation of the line though:

1. Is the line south of Merredin to Kondinin operated as one section? It seemed (with the amount of time between the trains) that the first train would have either shunted into the CBH sidings at Narembeen or made it through to Kondinin prior to the second train leaving Merredin. I would have thought that the second train would have been able to leave Merredin once the first got to Muntadgin at least, rather than have to wait for so long.

2. As the trains are loaded, does the southern most train come and meet the second train, and then combine for the return journey into Merredin? Or do they run as seperate trains the whole time? If they can combine for the return trip at Muntadgin, and run as one train back into the Merredin yard, why could they not do that on the outward journey? run to Muntadgin and then split the train to the south. If they cannot do this at all, does this mean that the train down in Narembeen/Kondinin needs to wait until the Muntadgin train is loaded and has returned to Merredin before thay can start the return journey again?

3. Can they run the smaller trains with one driver? I thought I saw only the one driver in Narembeen, but there were two drivers on the second train outside Merredin.

Cheers,

Matt.

Sponsored advertisement

  8888 Chief Commissioner

Location: Shire of Mundaring
Hi Matt / all,

I can't answer all these, but I would assume with train order working, any siding could be used as a division point on a line.

Watco seem to like hitting silos hard to clear them, hence loading at Kondinin, then crossing trains there to load the second immediately afterwards.

Simon
  wn514 Chief Commissioner

Location: at a skyhooks concert living in the 70's
I saw a standard gauge watco loco parked up on its own at either Kellerberrin or tammin today. someone else may know the precise siding.
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

I saw a standard gauge watco loco parked up on its own at either Kellerberrin or tammin today. someone else may know the precise siding.
wn514
Hi Wal, I saw one loco parked up at Grass Valley yesterday afternoon on the way through, but didn't get the number from the highway.

Simon, thanks again for the info. I managed to chase CBH002 and CBH005 from Goomalling to Beacon yesterday, and also saw a P class in Goomalling on ballast train duties for the resleepering works happening east of town. The trip to Beacon took nearly five hours from Goomalling, but they were stopped for ten minutes by sheep on the line just north of Manmanning grain bin! Trip to Burakin was not bad at 60 - 80 kph steady, but the trip from there to Beacon was a steady 40kph.
  darsamalx Locomotive Fireman

Granted this post may be a bit late but did anyone manage to get any photos of the CBH workings from Grass Patch into Esperance a few weeks back?
  P2017 Chief Commissioner

Location: Geraldton
Cbh007 substained some collision damage after this incident in the Geraldton port on Thursday.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-23/port-authority-probes-rail-crash/4908284

Cheers
David
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

Drove through the Quairading area yesterday and came across a derailment at Jacobs Well - about eight wagons in the dirt, with a couple on a very good lean. Seems to have happened over a culvert, and when I got down there, only the derailed wagons were still there, the rest of the train was out of there. I am assuming it was loaded, as the rest of the train was not on the Quairading side of the derailment as far as I could see. There were a couple of tipper trucks, a front end loader and an excavator working on dumping rip rap into the area, but I didn't want to get too close and in the way during the works.

Anyone have any more information? The word around the office in Northam yesterday was that the track may not be repaired following this derailment, and that the line would be now effectively closed.

Cheers,

Matt.
  bacoss Station Staff

Drove through the Quairading area yesterday and came across a derailment at Jacobs Well - about eight wagons in the dirt, with a couple on a very good lean. Seems to have happened over a culvert, and when I got down there, only the derailed wagons were still there, the rest of the train was out of there. I am assuming it was loaded, as the rest of the train was not on the Quairading side of the derailment as far as I could see. There were a couple of tipper trucks, a front end loader and an excavator working on dumping rip rap into the area, but I didn't want to get too close and in the way during the works.

Anyone have any more information? The word around the office in Northam yesterday was that the track may not be repaired following this derailment, and that the line would be now effectively closed.

Cheers,

Matt.
Bulbous

Broken rail under the wagons apparently, also sounds like its not going to be reopened.
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

Saw CBH001 and CBH006 heading east through Avon Yard this morning, heading towards Goomalling probably (if the horn I heard passing the office this morning was them). There was also CBH004, CBH005, CBH011, CBH014, CBH017, CBH118, CBH120 and CBH121 all parked at Avon Yard this morning, along with CBH119 and CBH122 on the SG rake in the grain load-out.
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

Saw CBH001 and CBH010 in Bolgart non Friday morning with half a rake each, 001 under the loadout and 010 on the main. They looked like they were going to combine the rakes and then head north to Calingiri to grab the four empties sitting on the loop, but I am not sure where they were headed after that. Bolgart looked very busy with both small rakes there, and both locos with their lights on facing north.
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

I saw CBH002 in Bolgart again on Friday morning, facing south with half a rake of wagons. Then I saw another loco and the other half a rake of wagons heading south about five kilometres north of Bolgart at around 7.30am.

Also noticed a P class come through Jennacubbine past the pub at around 1pm on Friday with the ballast wagons heading north. Stopped on the main for a few minutes, then headed off again.
  8888 Chief Commissioner

Location: Shire of Mundaring
Watco are currently running to Wickepin, assisting to clear the 125,000 tonnes of grain received there.  The train divides at Narrogin, running from there in two divisions to Wickepin.
  P2017 Chief Commissioner

Location: Geraldton
CBH001-CBH002 were sighted in Geraldton on Sunday 5th of Jan.
I am not 100% certain but there could be 2 fleets back up here in the Midwest.

Cheers
David
  drk Beginner

This morning about 8:50am I saw an empty CBH train going through Midland, strangely it had 3 locos pulling it. Is this commonplace? And what is the reasoning behind it?
Cheers Smile
  8888 Chief Commissioner

Location: Shire of Mundaring
There is still no agreement between CBH and Brookfield for rail access after 30 June, according to an article in the most recent Countryman.  In a worst case scenario, CBH are threatening to bring all the grain to ports by road transport for a period of time after June 30.
  8888 Chief Commissioner

Location: Shire of Mundaring
CBH / Watco now have two DBZ locos on hire, 2310 and 2312.  They are planned to haul a hired set of XU and small number of XT wagons.  Two P class are proposed to replace these locos at some stage.
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

8888 - do you know where they will be running out of? Avon?

I have also heard that Watco are about to launch another (non-grain) service on the NG somewhere, but everyone seems quite tight-lipped about it. Does anyone happen to know what area they will be operating in, and who for?
  8888 Chief Commissioner

Location: Shire of Mundaring
Hi Bulbous / all,

The set is running out of Avon, currently servicing Kalannie.

I am not aware of any narrow gauge contracts Watco are chasing, but they are also sourcing standard gauge wagons from Aurizon.

Simon
  DBclass Chief Commissioner

Location: Western Australia
Would be cool if WATCO were going after the GRIFFIN COAL job.
  SKVT Junior Train Controller

Location: Iapetus
There is still no agreement between CBH and Brookfield for rail access after 30 June, according to an article in the most recent Countryman. In a worst case scenario, CBH are threatening to bring all the grain to ports by road transport for a period of time after June 30.
8888

The dispute between Brookfield and CBH is, as far as I am aware, being litigated before the Supreme Court. There was a reported interlocutory hearing about 6 weeks ago, indicating that the dispute is unlikely to be litigated by the 30 June deadline. Thinking outside the box, IMHO Brookfield should be divested of occupation of all those wheatbelt country rail lines which, realistically, are never going to see any traffic other than grain, and their occupation be transferred to CBH to run as vertically integrated operations. The advantage of this is that while there will be less likelihood of third party access, this will hardly matter( and after 13 years we are still waiting to see general goods trains returning to Corrigin, Kalannie, Albany, Wylie, etc),  any disputes between Mr traffic manger who wants to run longer and heavier trains and Mr Civil Engineer who says "No get s#ffed" can be quickly and definitively mediated in house mediated by Mr Boss, just as it was in the days of Westrail ownership.
  Trainplanner Chief Commissioner

Location: Along the Line
Totally agree. Third party access by other operators can be arranged and has been mandated in states like Queensland etc
  Bulbous Assistant Commissioner

Thanks for the responses, mush appreciated.

I have noticed recently that some of the loaded grain trains on the GSR between York and Northam are only using one loco, instead of the usual two. Is this for operational reasons, or for servicing/mechanical reasons? Last week on Wednesday morning there was a 40 wagon rake heading north through York with one unit, and on Thursday morning, there was a full 54 wagon rake heading north just south of Spencers Brook. Obviously there is no crew savings, but the one unit didn't seem to have trouble managing the various speed limit changes between York and Northam with the loaded train.
  8888 Chief Commissioner

Location: Shire of Mundaring
All change - P2511 and 2517 replaced DBZ2310 and 2312 on hire to CBH / Watco today.
  DBclass Chief Commissioner

Location: Western Australia
Where did all the spare locos come from Aurizon? They have stored most of the 13DB's now I believe. Plus the DD's.

I assume the P class are more flexible and hence the reason for hiring them rather then the DB's.
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

I just think it's interesting we're seeing this sort of collaboration between Aurizon and a 'competitor'. Being a shortline operator, Watco would probably be interested in establishing a cooperative business relationship with Aurizon rather than a combative one...this hiring of narrow gauge equipment is a possible first by Aurizon and it might be the beginning of a Class 1/shortline relationship forming between Aurizon and CBH/Watco. A space to watch perhaps?

Sponsored advertisement

Display from:   

Quick Reply

We've disabled Quick Reply for this thread as it was last updated more than six months ago.