|EDITOR'S COMMENTS AUGUST 6, 2020|
General Electric manufactured the P40/P42 series
of diesel locomotives at Erie, Pennsylvania, during the period 1993-2001. Amtrak purchased 44 P40's, 207 P42's, and 18 dualmodes.
Our profile engine is #15. This 1996-built unit has spent most of its life working out of New Orleans. After a round trip on the Sunset Limited, and two rounds on the City of New Orleans in July, it is now on the Zephyr in August with 134.
DUE TO CIRCUMSTANCES BEYOND OUR CONTROL, THE WEB PAGES ARE OUT OF DATE AND CANNOT CURRENTLY BE UPDATED
INTERESTING TIMES AND OPPORTUNITIES
We live in crazy times, where our government institutions are being weaponized against the citizenry. Hopefully it will all be over with and "return to normal" at some point. The old adage is that where there are problems, there are also opportunities. Will 2020 be looked back upon as the year that civilization started its downward spiral into chaos, or will it be retrospectively seen as the year the old way of doing business was updated to future sustainability?
It is apparent that our political leadership has no concept of trying to raise a family on $600 a week or less in this day and time. Certainly you do not see the billionaire class of current US Senators living on $600 a week or less. Indeed, the few Congresspeople left in Washington who are not heirs to large fortunes always complain that they have difficulty maintaining their lifestyle of having a residence in the DC area while still maintaining one in their home district. All this complaining from those who bring home tens or hundreds of times more compensation than the average person (for very little work). We think they should spend a week or a month trying to make do with $600 a week or less.
The United States has a once in a lifetime opportunity to fix its economic and social problems, rather that prop up the old way of doing business. You can see the need for new ways of conducting business, educating young people, dealing with bigotry, government obsolescence, political disfunction, dealing with healthcare needs, the insane compensation system for college football coaches, and professional athletes, etc. With respect to travel, the airline system of the past was economically and environmentally unsustainable. Would it not be wonderful to replace it with a balanced mix of high speed (or at least higher speed) ground transportation options?
The Amtrak organization also seems to be broken and unsustainable, with its inability to fulfill promises or improve. What should replace it is unknown, but it is time for a change. And it is time to change to the leadership needed to get constructive things done.
Just an opinion.
IVY CITY SHUFFLE
Have you ever had the luxury of watching the Ivy City shuffle at Union Station in Washington DC? It used to be a lot easier before all the armed military people with bazookas and flamethrowers. But anyway, it is a treat. Hard to discribe in just a few words, but each day the Crescent, Silver, and Capitol come and go with two P42's. Often the pairs stay together Chicago-Washington-New Orleans or Florida and back, but through some magic, enough working single units come and go from these overnight trains to staff the Palmetto, Carolinian, Cardinal, and the un-named regionals that ply their wares into Virginia. And once and a while a unit breaks from the pack and heads to Philly, or makes a nighttime move to Lorton for the Autotrain. It's like the elephants in the old Barnum & Bailey Circus, they come snorting out of Ivy City, usually in threes but sometimes in twos, and line up waiting for the electrics to switch off at the mouth of the Capitol Hill tunnel. A southbound train pulls in, the electric goes into the tunnel, backs out, and is replaced by a diesel for the trip over the Potomac River into Virginia. The Capitol comes in, and usually the whole trainset goes to the yard to turn for tomorrow, maybe with a different pair of engines, but from time to time there may be a surprise. It's a hoot, and usually comes off like a well-orchestrated Broadway play. Day in and day out, usually without much of a hitch. They make it look easy. Guess it takes a total train nurd to appreciated it!
For our new viewers, perhaps who just found this page, here is our mission: To track as well as possible the movements of Amtrak's P42 Genesis locomotive fleet, along with those older P40's that are still active. This information is only available to the public through in person visual sightings, or recorded by occasional trackside camera. While our reports are often delayed, sometimes by up to 24 hours or more, having a past history of a location can be important in predicting where a specific unit might be in the future. Except for generalities, we are not able to guarantee that a certain locomotive will be on a certain train. We wish we could.
Below are links to the P42 locomotives we know to be active, and another link to a page of destroyed or currently damaged units that we know about. There is now a third group of working units that Amtrak has stored, or placed on standby.
While there has not been any official pronouncement on this subject, it appears that a number of formerly active P42's are being mothballed and may be up for retirement. We will let you draw your own conclusions about this, but if you do not see a given road number on either of our lists, then it likely is in this category. Maybe we will need to create a third page at some point for the "inactives but not quite dead yet".
|INACTIVE GENESIS ENGINES|
|ACTIVE GENESIS ENGINES|