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UPRR says tracks are cleared

Eyewitnesses say they aren't

"We have gotten rid of the congestion. What we're working on now is restoring excellent service. That's going to take awhile," CEO Dick Davidson said at a news conference at UP's Centennial Yards in western Fort Worth.

However, there is no infomation to this effect on UP's website, and the statement has provoked a lot of wry comments on newsgroups. Additionally, what's the difference between no congestion and exellent service? Union Pacific has long ago lost any shimmer of honesty or reliability in what many call propaganda. The company has earlier predicted that tracks would be cleared September, and then in January. Since another three months have gone, is it yet again time for UP to say "all's well"?

This latest announcement does differ from the previous calls of "all's well" in that UP now claims that the tracks are in fact cleared now, not that they will be cleared soon. The qualifier that ecellent service has not been restored probably means that though trains are not idling on main lines, they are still being delayed in yards and sidings.

This is assuming UPs assesment is accurate. I have yet to find unlaconic or unsarcastic positive comment about this on the net. The misc.transport.rail.americas newsgroup is littered with comments like

"I live within sight of the Sunset Route in SW Houston, and can verify that the 'eastbound' main line in SW Houston, is still being used to hold trains several times a week. "

"I'm glad the congestion is over! The autorack train that has been sitting at Brighton for 3 days outside my back door must be a figment of my imagination!"

In any case, UP has announced a number of capital improvements. $160 million will go toward the 530-mile corridor between San Antonio, Texas, and New Orleans. This is part of a $1.4 billion package geared at improving the network in Texas and Louisiana. And they are nearing completion of a $4.4 million track improvement and upgrade project on the line between Bay City and Angleton, Texas.

Click for earlier items about the jam on Union Pacific:

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