Digest: Long Island Rail Road deploys more weapons to fight leaf residue on tracks

News Wire Digest fourth section for Oct. 30: Maryland congressional delegation expresses concern over Purple Line; Montreal REM releases 3D look at new station
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A screenshot from a Long Island Rail Road video shows one of the lasers used to clear leaf residue from tracks.
Long Island Rail Road

Friday late morning rail news:

Long Island Rail Road adds equipment, speed to leaf-fighting efforts
The Long Island Rail Road has added a second laser train and increased the speed of its pressure-washing trains as part of its effort to deal with leaf residue on railroad tracks. In a press release, the railroad says washing trains are now operating at 25 mph, up from the previous 15 mph, while the second laser train, created with Amsterdam, N.Y.-based Laser Precision Solutions, increases the ability to burn away the chemical substance pectin, which is left behind by crushed leaves and makes the rail surface slick. Pectin can cause wheels to slip, which in turn leads to flat spots that can take cars out of service. The railroad has also increased its wheel-truing capacity to deal with flat spots. A short video explaining the leaf-fighting efforts is available here.

Maryland legislators express concern about future of Purple Line project
Members of Maryland’s congressional delegation have written Gov. Larry Hogan expressing concerns about the future of the Purple Line light rail project in light of the departure of the consortium managing construction. The Washington Post reports nine Democratic lawmakers wrote the Republican governor on Wednesday, urging negotiations with the Purple Line Transit Partners over the roughly $800 million in unpaid cost overruns that led the consortium to quit the project, and to “find a path forward” to prevent further delays. A spokesman for the Governor said the congressional delegation is “obviously … a bit out of the loop on where things stand.” The full letter is available here.

Montreal REM offers 3D look at new station
The builders of Montreal’s $6.3 billion, 41.6-mile Reseau express metropolitain light rail system have released a preview of what one stop on the 27-station system will look like. The Daily Hive website reports a 3D video offers a look at the Fairview-Point-Claire station under construction on Montreal’s West Island. All stations will follow the same main architectural principles and “include the concepts of transparency, movement, and wood,” according to REM. The system is scheduled to begin operation in 2021.

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