Posts Tagged ‘CSX in Indiana’

CSX to Restore Service to Section of Ex-Monon

January 23, 2020

A recent online report said CSX will restore service to a four-mile portion of the former Monon Railroad in New Albany, Indiana.

The segment in question is between the K&I Bridge over the Ohio River to North Vernia (Grant Line Road Crossing).

The carrier plans to provide service to Northwest Ordinance Distilling, which is owned by the Sazerac Company.

Northwest Ordinance opened in November 2018 in a facility that once hosted a Pillsbury Prepared Dough Products Plant. The Pillsbury plant closed several years ago.

The former Monon line in question, known as the Hoosier Subdivision, has been abandoned from North Vernia to Cloverdale, Indiana.

The Hoosier Sub was last used as a through route by the Indiana Rail Road, which access it via a connection from a former Milwaukee Road branch between Terre Haute and Bedford, Indiana.

The former Milwaukee Road line was abandoned after the INDR ceased using it and has been converted into a hiking and biking trail.

CSX will reach what remains of the Hoosier Sub on trackage rights on Norfolk Southern in Louisville and over the K&I bridge.

The Hoosier Sub still had several semaphore signals in place when it last lasted used.

New Short Line Takes over CSX Routes

September 11, 2018

The Decatur & Eastern Illinois Railroad began operations this past Sunday on former CSX tracks in western Indiana and east central Illinois.

The first train left Decatur, Illinois, en route to Paris, Illinois, using two leased locomotives, blue FURX GP38-2 5514 and WAMX 4002, a former Canadian National Railway GP40-2LW.

The new railroad is owned by Watco Companies and covers 126.7 miles of the former CSX Decatur Subdivision and the Danville Secondary.

The system extends from Decatur to Montezuma, Indiana. At Chrisman, Illinois, another route runs to Terre Haute, Indiana, via Paris.

The former route is ex-Baltimore & Ohio trackage that once stretched from Indianapolis to Springfield, Illinois. The latter route was once New York Central territory.

Connections for the D&EI include CSX at Terre Haute and Hillsdale, Indiana; the Eastern Illinois Railroad at Metcalf, Illinois; Union Pacific at Tuscola, Illinois; and Canadian National and Norfolk Southern at Decatur.

The D&EI will be based in Paris where many of the its customers are located.

The herald of the new railroad features an ear of corn framed by the outlines of Illinois and Indiana.

No Injuries in Southern Indiana CSX Derailment

June 18, 2018

Some residents of Princeton, Indiana, were evacuated after a CSX train derailed Sunday night and caught fire. Officials said no one was injured as a result of the derailment.

CSX officials said 23 cars derailed, including five cars carrying propane. Two of the burning cars were reported to be hauling frozen food.

Those evacuated live in a mile radius of the derailment in the city located 25 miles north of Evansville on the former Chicago & Eastern Illinois mainline that once hosted crack streamliners headed to Florida and the Gulf Coast.

Police also closed U.S. Route 41. The train had two locomotives, 89 loaded cars and nine empty cars and derailed at about 8:10 p.m.

The Gibson County Sheriff’s office said it received several calls about a derailment and explosion near Old U.S. 41 and Caniff Trailer Court.

Memorial Day Weekend in Indiana: Part 1

June 18, 2018

First of two parts

As Memorial Day weekend approached the brother and I exchanged ideas for how we would spend the weekend. Several good ideas came to light, but as always the weather forecast would dictate where we would wind up.

By Thursday before the holiday, it was obvious that Northern Indiana was going to be the best way to head.

We agreed that Sunday would be a freight train day and Monday would be a day of passenger trains.

Our weekend began with a late Saturday afternoon departure. We were bound for the Super 8 motel in Goshen, Indiana.

After our free breakfast on Sunday morning we were trackside at the cemetery on the west side of town before 7:30 a.m. We were there a good two minutes when 19K called a medium clear at CP412.

The 19K is a Marion Branch train, one that we chased last Labor Day weekend as part of our “chasing air” adventure.

This normally afternoon train was either really early today or this was yesterday’s train. It didn’t matter; it was a train headed in the right direction at the right time of day. We shot it from the cemetery and the chase was on.

Marion Branch trains don’t run real fast, so getting ahead was not a problem.

We had to let the entire train go by at the road crossing at the cemetery and were still ahead by the time we reached the outskirts of town.

Indiana Route 15 is the chase road south out of Goshen. Our next shot was at MP8. This is right at the New Paris elevator.

You can see from here the distant signal for the CSX diamonds at Milford Junction. The 19K was only looking at an approach.

Milford Junction is much like Attica Junction for Norfolk Southern trains on the Sandusky District in Ohio. If CSX has a train within a hundred miles, you’re not getting across.

We again had to let the entire train go by before we could resume the chase, but not to worry, it was slowing down as the last cars passed by us.

After Milford, we looked for the first county road to the left after leaving town to access Old Route 15 Road. Old 15 Road runs right next to the tracks on the west side from Milford to Leesburg.

We were easily ahead and set up for a shot that features a nice white farm house and red barn.

Again, the whole train had to pass, but they were only making 25 mph and the speed limit on the road is 50 mph.

Even without speeding we should make the grade crossing at the north end of Leesburg. Just in case, I did bend the speed limit a little and we made the crossing easily.

This is important if you want to get the Leesburg elevator shot. The road crosses over to the east side of the tracks for a couple of miles.

We got the Leesburg shot and, again, got across the tracks at the south end of Leesburg siding where the road runs out.

Our next shot would be at the street running in Warsaw. This is the earliest in the day that we’ve gotten a train in Warsaw.

The light was fabulous on this morning as the 19K tiptoed down the street and across the diamonds with the CF&E.

We decided to keep going with the 19K rather than sit on our laurels at Warsaw. Route 15 stays with the tracks to Silver Lake, then the tracks cut across to the southeast to North Manchester, where we picked up Indiana Route 13.

We found a nice spot at Rose Hill, a thriving community of four houses and not much else for our next shot.

We were off from here to North Manchester for a shot at the elevator there. The elevator is at the southern edge of town just after the tracks cross the Eel River.

Last Labor Day weekend, Route 13 had a bridge out and we had to detour around it to continue the chase. There were no detours today and we were again in hot pursuit down Route 13.

We got another shot at the fertilizer plant in Urbana and another at the grain elevator in Speicherville (pronounced Spikerville).

The town of Wabash was next. We found the over/under between the Marion Branch and the former Wabash last year, but it was shadowed in and the train never showed. I followed the same route to the over/under that we did before.

Follow Route 13 into town and after crossing the Wabash take the first street to the left and just keep going straight.

The city street turns into Lagro Road. This time we found the over/under bathed in sunshine and we had the right radio channel for the former Wabash (160.380).

The 19K was coming through the connection to the Wabash, known as the NS Huntington District.

As we set up for the shot, horns to the south got our attention. Train 368 was approaching. They stopped just short of Lagro Road where we were.

When the 19K went by overhead the two crews exchanged some chatter. It seems that 369 was coming south behind the 19K and the 368 was getting re-crewed here.

Armed with that information, we gave up on the 19K and returned to the Marion Branch between Wabash and Speicherville.

Finding a spot that could be shot in either direction depended on which train showed up first. We waited and waited . . and waited . . . and waited.

All of a sudden our eventful morning had come to a screeching halt. Lunch time was now upon us and the Subway just down the road was calling me. The sun was getting high in the sky, so we went for vittles.

After lunch we began trolling north, not sure if either train had passed; the radio was suddenly rather quiet. As we got back near North Manchester we began to pick up 368 on the radio.

It was ahead of us. We kept moving north and eventually caught up to the 368 in the siding at Claypool.

The 369 was sitting there as well and had to have been there the better part of four hours waiting for this meet.

More chatter on the radio indicated that a westbound on the former Nickel Plate Road that crosses the Marion Branch at Claypool was approaching.

Train 365 turned north on the Marion Branch. It had a single former Burlington Northern Grinstein green SD70 for its power.

We made a beeline for Warsaw and the street running. While we were on the road the Marion Branch Dispatcher indicated to the 365 that it would be holding at Leesburg for the 200 to run around them.

This made for an easy decision; we just waited at Warsaw for Train 200 and then we would head north and intercept both trains again north of Leesburg.

The 200 is a double-stack train; today it was also a one-unit wonder and not very long. That is inefficient by CSX standards, but NS plays by different rules.

After shooting the 200 in the street we were off for Leesburg, to find that the 365 was gone. Somewhere along the way the plans got changed and the run around was called off.

The 200 was now going into the siding at Leesburg for a meet with something else. Since there are no sidings between Leesburg and Goshen, it would be a while before something would come south.

About now the CSX detector at MP 155 announced a train passing it. The diamonds at Miford Junction are at about MP 166 on CSX. The train was a westbound, the Q137.

According to the detector it had over 15,000 feet of train. That’s almost three miles . . . holy cow!

We set up for its passage at the old grain elevator just west of Milford Junction. While we waited we decided that after Q137 passes we were going to head west along the former Baltimore & Ohio.

We started to do this about 10 years ago, but a line of severe thunderstorms cut our trip short as we headed through the storms to drier areas.

We left off at Nappanee, which just happens to be the next town west of Milford.

The Q137 lumbered by doing about 35 mph. We had to wait awhile for the train to clear the crossing that we were at because my Jeep was on the north side of the tracks and we had shot on the south side.

We did not see any other trains as we headed west through Nappanee. We caught up to the Q137 at Bremen.

They were stopped at a red signal looking into the headlight of an eastbound mixed freight at the Bremen crossovers.

An eastbound double stack was coming past the two trains; Q137 would cross over to Main 2 after the double stack cleared.

Before the eastbound could clear up, the dispatcher changed his mind and let another eastbound intermodal come past before turning the Q137 loose.

He also radioed a westbound that they were crossing over at Nappanee to Main 2 and they were going to follow the Q137 west.

Armed with this information, we continued scouting ahead for decent photo spots. They were few and far between in this part of Indiana.

I had heard from others that the former B&O is not very photogenic in spots, and this certainly was one of those spots.

We found the thriving metropolis of Teegarden to be about the size of Rose Hill.

The CSX right-of-way was heavily treed-in and there was no elevator or anything else worth shooting here.

We headed into Walkerton. Here the former B&O crosses the Michigan City branch of the Nickel Plate at a brick tower.

The tower is still standing and it looks surprisingly good considering it is no longer used.

The lighting for photography was right down the nose, made even worse by the westbounds being on Main 2, the south track. Had they been on Main 1 I think the shots could have turned out a little better.

We shot both westbounds here and then continued west across the Indiana countryside.

The former Grant Trunk Western diamonds at Wellsboro  were the next thing we encountered. An eastbound Canadian National train belonging to the current owner of the ex-GTW was  sitting east of town. They were working the elevator at Kingsbury.

Since it was now late afternoon and almost into evening, we decided to hang here for a while until heading north to Michigan City for the night.

We were rewarded with a CSX train each way and a westbound CN. Wellsboro is not very photogenic but we did the best we could.

As the sun began to set, we were heading north on U.S. 421 bound for a hotel in Michigan City. There is a cluster of hotels just north of the interchange of I-94 and U.S. 421.

We chose the Super 8. They had plenty of rooms and we were at the Texas Roadhouse across the parking lot having dinner a few minutes later.

Article by Marty Surdyk

2 Hurt in Indiana CSX Stack Train Derailment

May 4, 2018

Two CSX crew members were treated at a hospital for injuries suffered in a late Wednesday derailment of a stack train near Nappanee, Indiana.

The derailment sent two locomotives and an estimated 30 cars off the tracks. Railroad officials believe that weather was a factor.

A severe thunderstorm had passed through the area about two hours earlier.

Police said an adjacent highway was closed for two hours due to the derailment.

The wreck occurred on the former Baltimore & Ohio mainline between Chicago and Pittsburgh.

CSX to Change Indiana, Kentucky Traffic Pattern

August 18, 2016

CSX operated its executive train in Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio this week as part of an inspection of a new route for eastbound freight traffic moving between Louisville, Kentucky, and Cincinnati.

The special operated north from Louisville on the Louisville & Indiana Railroad to Seymour, Indiana, where it then turned east to travel to Cincinnati on the CSX Indiana Subdivision.

CSX logo 3An L&I news release said that on or shortly after Sept. 1 CSX will move eastbound traffic off its current route between Louisville and Cincinnati from a former Louisville & Nashville route to follow the path taken by the inspection train.

Westbound traffic from Cincinnati to Louisville will continue to use the ex-L&N.

The new routing is former Pennsylvania Railroad between Louisville and Seymour, and former Baltimore & Ohio between Seymour and Cincinnati with the latter having been part of the Cincinnati-St. Louis mainline.

At one time, the B&O had its own route between Louisville and North Vernon, Indiana, on the St. Louis line, but that route has since been abandoned.

CSX and the L&I have recently rebuilt the ex-Pennsy route between Louisville and Seymour, which hosted Amtrak’s Kentucky Cardinal between 1999 and 2003.

In PRR days, the route hosted Chicago-Louisville trains and through service for Florida, including the South Wind.

CSX spent $100 million for track and signal improvements to the L&I line that will raise the top speed from 25 mph to 49 mph.

An online report said that by adopting directional running CSX will be able to operate longer trains that are not limited by siding length on the ex-L&N route.

CSX has been publicizing the increase in traffic on the Indiana Sub in recent weeks, with the L&I news release saying that CSX train frequency will increase from three to four trains per day to as many as 10 with additional traffic possible.

Three of the CSX trains  on the L&I operate north of Seymour to Indianapolis. Those trains do not operate daily.

The Indiana Sub sees little traffic west of Seymour across Indiana and CSX has taken much of the line out of service within Illinois. Until the middle 1960s, this was the route used by the B&O premier St. Louis-Washington train the National Limited.

The former L&N mainline in Kentucky will continue to see a local operating in both directions and perhaps an eastbound intermodal train, the Q134.

The Indiana Sub still has numerous B&O color position light signals in use between Seymour and Cincinnati.

CSX Top Speed to Rise on Indiana Line

August 6, 2016

CSX trains will soon see higher speed limits between Louisville, Kentucky; and Seymour, Indiana, on tracks owned by the Louisville & Indiana Railroad.

L&ITrack improvements will up the top speed to 49 mph from 25 mph and allow for trains up to 14,000 feet in length.

The route, which is a former Pennsylvania Railroad line, currently hosts three to four trains a day but that may rise to as many as 10 a day.

The higher speeds and longer trains were made possible by a track rehabilitation project that CSX helped to fund. CSX has trackage rights on the L&I.

“This is a critical route that improves CSX connectivity to Midwest markets and offers more efficiency and routing options for automotive and intermodal trains,” a CSX spokesman said. “This agreement also enhances rail access for the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville and increased efficiency service for both LIRC and CSX customers.”

CSX, L&I Finalize Easement Agreement

June 19, 2015

CSX and the Louisville & Indiana have completed an agreement whereby the Class I carrier will receive a permanent easement to use L&I tracks between Indianapolis and Louisville, Kentucky.

The 106-mile long route is a former Pennsylvania Railroad line that once carried the fabled South Wind passenger train between Chicago and Florida. CSX will pay L&I $10 million for the easement.

The agreement also sets out terms for a $90 million program of track improvements that will take place over the next several years.

The project calls for laying 20 miles of new rail on the southern section of the route as well as other infrastructure improvements.

The two railroads have also been meeting with local officials and residents along the route since May to explain the track rehabilitation project as well as address concerns related to public safety, anticipated increases in freight volume and construction plans.

“As we undertake the first phase of construction, we will continue to collaborate with local officials to plan and execute construction activities to minimize disruptions to communities along the corridor,” said L&I President John Goldman in a news release.

The two railroads began talking about upgrading the route and CSX’s use of it in 2011.

L&I, which is based in Jeffersonville, Indiana, acquired the route from Conrail in 1994.

“CSX’s investment of approximately $100 million will provide enhanced rail access for the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville, increase capacity and efficiency along this corridor and improve connectivity to CSX’s broader network,” said Oscar Munoz, president and chief operating officer of CSX in a news release. “These critical infrastructure improvements include the installation of new rail, upgrades to the rail bed structure and bridge improvements to enhance safety and service for customers in the Midwest and provide more efficient rail service throughout the region.”

The L&I is one of several short-line railroads held by Anacostia Rail Holdings. Anacostia’s railroads operate in seven states and also include the Chicago South Shore & South Bend Railroad, Gulf Coast Switching Company, New York & Atlantic Railway, Northern Lines Railway, LLC and Pacific Harbor Line, Inc.

Then and Now on the B&O St. Louis Line

December 22, 2014


Michell-May 17, 2014-2

Here is a little then and now at Mitchell, Ind. This small town in southern Indiana was the crossing of the Baltimore & Ohio’s line between Cincinnati and St. Louis with the Monon’s line between Chicago and Louisville, Ky. The B&O controlled the interlocking from its passenger depot east of the crossing. The Monon had its own passenger station.

The top photograph was made in July 1992. By now, both the Monon and B&O routes were controlled by CSX, which still had an operator in the depot to operate the interlocking.

Both photographs are looking eastward from the grade crossing just west of the diamond. The local is on the siding heading eastward. It might be getting ready to work the small yard to the east of the station. Note the color position light signal mounted on a cantilever.

If you look past the depot, you’ll see another CPL for eastward movements. At the time, there was a sign by that signal indicating that it was the start of the Medora block. Those CPLs were once ubiquitous on B&O mainlines.

Although not obvious, major changes are coming to the ex-Monon. The last through trains between Chicago and Louisville over this route, R590 and R591, made their last trips through here in late May of 1992, although they continued to operate on the north end.

In less than a year, CSX will abandon the ex-Monon between Bloomington and Bedford, thus severing the line as a through route. Local service was still being maintained to Bedford when the 1992 photograph was made. CSX also had the option of operating trains north out of Louisville across the Mitchell diamonds and then backing onto the ex-B&O to go west to St. Louis. They would indeed do this for a while.

The bottom photo was made last May. The ex-Monon tracks are still in place, yet haven’t been used since 2009 when CSX ceased providing local service on what is called the Hoosier Subdivision except right around New Albany, Ind. That same year the Indiana Rail Road stopped operating trains over the ex-Monon to Louisville. Therefore, the ex-Monon tracks in Mitchell collect rust as they await disposition.

All of the B&O CPL signals are gone, replaced by what appear to be older signal heads placed on modern masts. The CPLs that once stood east of the depot have been removed.

Yet, there is much that has not changed about this scene. The ex-B&O is still double track through town and the old B&O depot is still in place. The siding on the ex-B&O looks rather rusty, suggesting it sees little use. The connection between the ex-Monon and ex-B&O is still in place.

I’m not sure what the traffic count is on the ex-B&O but bits and pieces I’ve seen on railfan chat lists leads me to believe that few trains use this route at this location. I wonder if any Cincinnati-St. Louis trains pass through here. I believe that much of that traffic takes the former Conrail route via Indianapolis to the north.

Whatever the case, the future of both of these rail lines seems murky as best.

Article and Photographs by Craig Sanders

STB Delays Upgrading of Indiana Route for CSX

December 29, 2013

The Surface Transportation Board has asked for more information before it will act on an application to upgrade a former Pennsylvania Railroad route in Indiana for increased CSX freight traffic.

The project would improve  the Louisville & Indiana route between Indianapolis and Louisville, Ky., to accommodate additional CSX overhead traffic.

Last June CSX asked the STB for a perpetual, non-exclusive operating easement over the L&I, which formerly was part of a PRR route that stretched from Chicago to Louisville. Most of this route was abandoned north of Indianapolis during the early Conrail era.

The STB has requested additional information because, it said, the CSX application did not adequately address all concerns of local governments and residents.

CSX was directed to conduct another environmental study to review those issues, most of which involved the effects of increased train traffic.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has voiced concerns about noise pollutionand the effect of additional train traffic on wildlife. Some local communities have worried about trains blocking access for emergency responders.

“We don’t know of anything that would possibly stop the project. It’s just another step in the process,” said Louisville & Indiana President Mike Stolzman.

CSX plans to pay $10 million for the operating easement and provide up to $90 million in infrastructure upgrades that would enable the 286,000 pound freight cars to use the line and for trains to operate at top speeds of 60 mph.

The track work would involve replacement of a bridge near milepost 40 at Columbus, Ind., and the laying of continuous welded rail. Additional passing sidings would be added to the route.

CSX expects to send 10-12 trains a day over the L&I, all of which would be diverted from other Midwest CSX routes.