Chargers debut on another Illinois passenger route

RELATED TOPICS: LOCOMOTIVES | MIDWEST | TECHNOLOGY
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AmtrakLincolnServiceChargerSas
Amtrak Lincoln Service train No. 301 blasts downhill at Atlanta, Ill., powered by Siemens SC44 Charger No. 4611, on Wednesday, Feb. 21.
Steve Smedley
CHICAGO — Siemens-built Charger locomotives are now forging ahead on Amtrak's Chicago to St. Louis Lincoln Service trains.

The first run with an SC44 Charger passenger locomotive in the lead came on Feb. 21, when No. 4611 made the run over the Illinois plain. Chargers have been on the trains for weeks, but were not authorized to be in the lead position pending further "pre-revenue service acceptance" tests on the route.

The locomotives, however, are limited to running at speeds up to 79 mph because they are not yet equipped with Union Pacific's hybrid automatic train control-incremental train control system that permits operation to 110 mph between Dwight and Pontiac, Ill.

— Bob Johnston contributed to this report.

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