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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:31 pm 

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Location: southeastern USA
The extent to which oil firing will produce byproducts is not directly relatable to coal as an exact percentage. Too many variables. SLM / Sulzer modern rack engines burning light oil in vaporizing burners emitted less nasties than diesel electric locomotives of the 1980s on the Swiss rack railways modern steam was built for. OTOH, an old flame thrower burner in a badly engineered combustion conversion using Bunker C can not only emit a lot of particulates, but sparks of burning shell carbon as well - so, oil "cinders" are entirely possible.

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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2019 7:42 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 12:59 pm
Posts: 577
Alan Walker wrote:
Even if a fire patrol follows a train, depending on the humidity, wind and type of vegetation involved, it is entirely possible that a fire could spread beyond the ability of the fire patrol to contain it very quickly.

A spark from a hammer striking a metal stake caused the largest wildfire (in terms of acreage) in California history.

Shutting down non-essential operations during extreme fire conditions is probably the best course of action for anyone.


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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:12 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:15 pm
Posts: 474
I’m not sure I follow Alan... whatever state and federal waivers TVRM have would also have to be given to Dollywood, who operates steam daily, and three rivers rambler in Knoxville. and then there are all the other operations around the country that must have a federal waiver as well?


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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:04 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:52 am
Posts: 1689
Location: Strasburg, PA
Alan Walker wrote:
Here's another straight out fact for the steam faction to consider. Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum (one of the oldest steam operators in the country) operates under an exemption from state and federal air pollution control standards.

There are no Federal standards for air polution from steam locomotives. From the CFR:

40 CFR PART 92—CONTROL OF AIR POLLUTION FROM LOCOMOTIVES AND LOCOMOTIVE ENGINES
92.1(b) The requirements and prohibitions of this part do not apply with respect to: (1) Steam locomotives, as defined in §92.2;

92.2(b) Steam locomotive means a historic locomotive propelled by a steam engine.

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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:37 am 

Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:37 am
Posts: 15
Way back about 1988, the fledgling Niles Canyon Railway put their wood-burning Porter 0-4-0T+T back in service. One day, while sitting in the depot at Sunol, a representative of the Bay Area Air Quality Management office showed up with an opacity card (sp?). He was responding to a complaint about the wood smoke from one of the locals. End result: we converted the locomotive to burn used motor oil rather than take the locomotive out of service. My understanding was, the air quality folks had jurisdiction over our locomotive while it was standing still (same with ships at port). Once we began to move, they had no say. To the best of my knowledge, the NCRY has had no issues with the air quality folks since.


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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:19 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:52 am
Posts: 1689
Location: Strasburg, PA
Brian Wise wrote:
He was responding to a complaint about the wood smoke from one of the locals. End result: we converted the locomotive to burn used motor oil rather than take the locomotive out of service.
Wood smoke with zero carbon footprint=bad. Oil with large carbon footprint=good.

That figures.

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Strasburg Rail Road Mechanical Department


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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 12:24 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 932
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Kelly Anderson wrote:
Alan Walker wrote:
Here's another straight out fact for the steam faction to consider. Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum (one of the oldest steam operators in the country) operates under an exemption from state and federal air pollution control standards.

There are no Federal standards for air polution from steam locomotives. From the CFR:

40 CFR PART 92—CONTROL OF AIR POLLUTION FROM LOCOMOTIVES AND LOCOMOTIVE ENGINES
92.1(b) The requirements and prohibitions of this part do not apply with respect to: (1) Steam locomotives, as defined in §92.2;

92.2(b) Steam locomotive means a historic locomotive propelled by a steam engine.


Actually, you're partly correct. There is no applicable standard under the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. Section 7547(a)(2)). However, under 42 U.S.C. Section 7574(a)(5), there is a standard for new locomotives. 40 CFR Section 92.2 defines a "new locomotive" as:

New locomotive or new locomotive engine means:

(1)(i) A locomotive or locomotive engine the equitable or legal title to which has never been transferred to an ultimate purchaser; or

(ii) A locomotive or locomotive engine which has been remanufactured, but has not been placed back into service.

(2) Where the equitable or legal title to a locomotive or locomotive engine is not transferred prior to its being placed into service, the locomotive or locomotive engine ceases to be new when it is placed into service.

(3) With respect to imported locomotives or locomotive engines, the term “new locomotive” or “new locomotive engine” means a locomotive or locomotive engine that is not covered by a certificate of conformity under this part at the time of importation, and that was manufactured or remanufactured after the effective date of the emission standards in this part which is applicable to such locomotive or engine (or which would be applicable to such locomotive or engine had it been manufactured or remanufactured for importation into the United States).

(4) Notwithstanding paragraphs (1) through (3) of this definition, locomotives and locomotive engines which were originally manufactured before January 1, 1973 and which have not been upgraded are not new.

(5) Notwithstanding paragraphs (1) through (3) of this definition, locomotives and locomotive engines which are owned by a small railroad and which have never been manufactured or remanufactured into a certified configuration are not new.

Nonconforming locomotive or nonconforming locomotive engine means a locomotive or locomotive engine which is not covered by a certificate of conformity prior to importation or being offered for importation (or for which such coverage has not been adequately demonstrated to EPA); or a locomotive or locomotive engine which was originally covered by a certificate of conformity, but which is not in a certified configuration, or otherwise does not comply with the conditions of that certificate of conformity.

(Note:

Domestic locomotives and locomotive engines which are not covered by a certificate of conformity prior to their introduction into U.S. commerce are considered to be noncomplying locomotives and locomotive engines.)

Therefore, the EPA does have regulation authority over locomotives that are new manufacture-including replica steam locomotives and any locomotive that has been rebuilt, unless there is case law that defines rebuilt versus overhauled. Under the current wording, it appears (unless Trainlawyer or another attorney is aware of case law to the contrary), that any locomotive that has undergone a significant repair such as an overhaul, meets the legal definition of a new locomotive.

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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 12:48 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 932
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Crescent-Zephyr wrote:
I’m not sure I follow Alan... whatever state and federal waivers TVRM have would also have to be given to Dollywood, who operates steam daily, and three rivers rambler in Knoxville. and then there are all the other operations around the country that must have a federal waiver as well?


That depends on whether the railroad operates in a jurisdiction that has an air pollution control bureau. These are state waivers, not federal waivers but (at least in Tennessee), under the current state and federal statutes, the APCBs have full enforcement authority. The only APCBs in Tennessee are for Davidson, Hamilton, Knox and Shelby counties. The other counties fall under the state environmental department. I do not know what Knox County and the state environmental department do so far as dealing with steam locomotives.

However, Chattanooga is a different situation due to the geography and historical pollution issues. At the time that the Clean Air Act was passed, Chattanooga had the worst air quality in the United States. My understanding under the original act is that were no differentiation between fixed and mobile sources of pollution. Therefore, the air pollution control board had full authority over any source of pollution within its jurisdiction. TVRM at that time was just barely organized and certainly did not have the strength to take on any government authority.

As for steam locomotives today, the Clean Air Act does authorize the EPA to regulate locomotive emissions as previously mentioned. The point that should concern steam locomotive operators is the definition of "new locomotive". Is a historic steam locomotive that has just gone through an FRA mandated inspection and overhaul a "new" locomotive? What percentage of material must be new material for a "historic" locomotive to become a "new" locomotive? The problem is that there is no bright line established by which you or I can go over a locomotive and say whether it is "historic" or "new".

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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 5:16 pm 

Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:22 pm
Posts: 1426
We are told that the day the 416 fire started, the neighborhood volunteer firefighters watched a D&S train pass by, and almost immediately, they noticed a fire by the track. They rushed into firefighting action, but were a couple seconds too late as the fire quickly grew beyond their ability to extinguish it.

Since we seem to know these details so well, I would like to see a precise timeline right down to the second. It can be best estimates, but the amazingly detailed description needs to put to a timeline so we can see the picture.

What is the exact sequence and timing of the events witnessed by the fire fighters?

Where were the two D&S fire crews with their pop cars during the unfolding of this drama? Where are the photographs showing the charred area abutting the track that is said to have been left and analyzed by the Forest Service?

Providing these obviously known details would help us judge the plausibility of the story. Without the estimated seconds, we are left with characterizations such as “soon after…” How soon? Are we talking 3.6 seconds or 22 minutes?

All of the detail is necessary. Yet the amount that seems to be missing is vastly greater than the amount supplied. Why is that? I suspect the reason is that you have many citizens, plus the Forest Service, and plus the Durango Herald, all desiring to see the D&S blamed for starting the fire. And we have been given just enough details to make that seem plausible. Any additional details would begin to cast doubt or raise unanswerable questions.


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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 6:01 pm 

Joined: Sun May 18, 2014 8:56 pm
Posts: 104
Location: New York
Alan Walker wrote:
Crescent-Zephyr wrote:
As for steam locomotives today, the Clean Air Act does authorize the EPA to regulate locomotive emissions as previously mentioned. The point that should concern steam locomotive operators is the definition of "new locomotive". Is a historic steam locomotive that has just gone through an FRA mandated inspection and overhaul a "new" locomotive? What percentage of material must be new material for a "historic" locomotive to become a "new" locomotive? The problem is that there is no bright line established by which you or I can go over a locomotive and say whether it is "historic" or "new".


I also wonder how this affects new build steam locomotives; machines that are produced in the 21st century yet intended for historical interpretation (Leviathan, York 17, T1 all immediately come to mind). As the first two examples I provided are operating under these regulations, I'm assuming there's some clause to the "new locomotive" stipulation?


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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:43 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 31, 2013 4:11 pm
Posts: 287
Here is the DOJ Filing in Fed District Court:
Tried the hyperlink but its too long. PDF uploaded...

Excepts:
JURISDICTION AND VENUE
2. This Court has jurisdiction over this action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1345.
3. Venue lies in this District pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b) because Defendants are
located in Colorado and the events giving rise to this action occurred in Colorado.

Colorado Revised Statute § 40-30-103 provides in pertinent part as follows:
“Every railroad company operating its line of road, or any part thereof, within this state shall be
liable for all damages by fires that are set out or caused by operating any such line of road, or
any part thereof, in this state, whether negligently or otherwise.”

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff United States of America prays for judgment as follows:
32. Damages in an amount to be determined at trial;
33. Pre-judgment interest, administrative costs, and penalties pursuant to 31 U.S.C. §
3717 and 43 C.F.R. § 2808.11;
34. Post-judgment interest at the statutory rate;
35. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2412, award of costs and attorney’s fees;
36. Such other and further relief as the Court may deem just and proper.
JURY DEMAND
37. The United States requests a trial by jury on all issues so triable.


Attachments:
File comment: PDF the link is too long
usa-v. DS Railroad Complaint (19-cv-1913) filed July 2 2019.pdf [45.04 KiB]
Downloaded 23 times
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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:23 pm 

Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:22 pm
Posts: 1426
If the D&S territory gets into a high fire danger condition again, I assume that they will either be prevented from running trains by the Forest Service or will voluntarily stop running trains due their own liability. Why did it take a big fire to make this point?

It seems that the risk defines the solution, and that solution is to make it 99.9% impossible for a D&S train to ignite a fire. Converting to oil will reduce the number of fires started, so fewer fires will spread to catastrophic levels, but still, the total risk would be unacceptable considering the legal consequences.

In seems to me that converting some engines to oil burners is a marginal precaution just like following the trains with water patrols, a flying helicopter, and a water spray smokestack. What is needed is a robust solution.


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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:42 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 932
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Ron Travis wrote:
If the D&S territory gets into a high fire danger condition again, I assume that they will either be prevented from running trains by the Forest Service or will voluntarily stop running trains due their own liability. Why did it take a big fire to make this point?

It seems that the risk defines the solution, and that solution is to make it 99.9% impossible for a D&S train to ignite a fire. Converting to oil will reduce the number of fires started, so fewer fires will spread to catastrophic levels, but still, the total risk would be unacceptable considering the legal consequences.

In seems to me that converting some engines to oil burners is a marginal precaution just like following the trains with water patrols, a flying helicopter, and a water spray smokestack. What is needed is a robust solution.


A robust solution would be conversion to all diesel operation during fire season or not running at all.

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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:45 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 932
Location: Tucson, Arizona
Frank J. DeStefano wrote:
Alan Walker wrote:
Crescent-Zephyr wrote:
As for steam locomotives today, the Clean Air Act does authorize the EPA to regulate locomotive emissions as previously mentioned. The point that should concern steam locomotive operators is the definition of "new locomotive". Is a historic steam locomotive that has just gone through an FRA mandated inspection and overhaul a "new" locomotive? What percentage of material must be new material for a "historic" locomotive to become a "new" locomotive? The problem is that there is no bright line established by which you or I can go over a locomotive and say whether it is "historic" or "new".


I also wonder how this affects new build steam locomotives; machines that are produced in the 21st century yet intended for historical interpretation (Leviathan, York 17, T1 all immediately come to mind). As the first two examples I provided are operating under these regulations, I'm assuming there's some clause to the "new locomotive" stipulation?


That's just it-there is no clause.

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 Post subject: Re: Feds sue Durango and Silverton over 416 fire
PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2019 6:11 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
Posts: 2310
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Kelly Anderson wrote:
Brian Wise wrote:
He was responding to a complaint about the wood smoke from one of the locals. End result: we converted the locomotive to burn used motor oil rather than take the locomotive out of service.
Wood smoke with zero carbon footprint=bad. Oil with large carbon footprint=good.

That figures.


Wood smoke can be quit irritating to some, and maybe a resident was downwind of this engine. Here in Denmark, wood stoves are very popular and used a lot, but they are also subject to regulation and those regulations are becoming tighter. It is very obvious when a few neighbors start their fires, and once in a while, I notice some irritation.

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