Massachusetts Coastal Railroad

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Massachusetts Coastal Railroad
Massachusetts Coastal Railroad.png
Reporting mark MC
Locale Massachusetts
Dates of operation 2007–
Predecessor Bay Colony Railroad
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Headquarters Hyannis, Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Coastal Railroad (reporting mark MC) is the successor operator of portions of Bay Colony Railroad.

History[edit]

On December 31, 2007 the contract to operate the freight railroad lines owned by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts administered by the Executive Office of Transportation (EOT) expired. These railroad lines included the Cape Cod Main, as well as several shorter lines. The new contract was awarded to a new company, the Massachusetts Coastal Railroad, which took over on January 1, 2008. At that time the Bay Colony ceased operation on those lines, but continues in other areas of the state.[1]

Massachusetts Coastal Railroad is a subsidiary of Cape Rail Inc., which also operates the Cape Cod Central Railroad.[2]

Massachusetts Coastal Railroad also operates under the abbreviated name Mass Coastal Railroad. This shortened version is the variation currently used on all of Massachusetts Coastal's locomotives and rolling stock.

Operations[edit]

A Mass Coastal trash train running along the Cape Cod Canal in 2014

The railroad operates the "trash train" hauling refuse from Yarmouth and Falmouth, MA to SEMASS, a waste-to-energy plant in Rochester, MA, as did its predecessor. However, Massachusetts Coastal operates the train under the new name, "Energy Train" using 20 former Canadian Pacific bath tub coal hopper cars rebuilt into "Energy" cars. These "Energy Cars" are numbered 1000-1019. These cars are painted in an attractive Pullman green scheme with a black band. The first 6 cars were fully painted with "MASS COASTAL" lettering, and "ENERGY TRAIN" written along the sides and gold stripes. the remaining 14 cars are in an abbreviated scheme with no lettering or stripes. This was done to speed up the delivery process.

Along with business on the Cape Main, the railroad operates several times a week on the Dean Street industrial track in Taunton, MA.

The Cape Cod Central Railroad is owned by the same parent company, and operates passenger trains as a heritage railroad. A plan to start "Mass Coastal" commuter rail service between Middleborough and Buzzards Bay or Sandwich in 2010[3] has not been implemented as of 2013, but the seasonal CapeFLYER train started running to Hyannis in summer 2013.

Mass Coastal took over CSX tracks from Taunton, MA to Fall River and New Bedford, MA.[4] The railroad continues to operate track south from the connection with CSX at Cotley Junction in Taunton to both New Bedford and Fall River.

Rolling stock[edit]

Mass Coastal operates with five locomotives; numbered 2006 through 2010. The 2006 is an ex-ATSF GP7u (previously BNSF 1336), the 2007 is a similar ex-ATSF GP9u (previously BNSF 1664), the 2008 is an ex-Canadian National GP9RM and the 2009 is an ex IC GP28. The 2007 is currently the back up engine on the Taunton line, the 2006 handles the Cape Cod Central Scenic Trains, the 2008 handles interchange with CSX. It also can be found handling the "Energy Train" (see below) generally Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings and afternoons. MC 2009 operates the Energy Train from SEMASS to Yarmouth. All MC units are to eventually be equipped with cab signals, enabling them to traverse the CSX interchange in Middleborough, MA. As of November 2009, 2008 and 2009 are so equipped. All of the locomotives are painted in an attractive Cranberry Red scheme with a black band and yellow stripes and lettering. The two exceptions to the paint scheme are engines 2006 and 2007. After a main generator failure in early 2009, the 2007 re-emerged with a new generator and yellow safety stripes on the front pilots. Soon after, this the unit was transferred to Taunton. It replaced 2006 which came to Hyannis and had the yellow stripes painted on both the front and rear plow. It is unknown if this will be done to the 2008 and 2009 as well. In 2009 a fourth engine was acquired numbered 2009. This is the newest engine on the roster; A GP28 built by EMD in 1964 for the Illinois Central Railroad. This engine was purchased from National Rail Equipment in Silvis, IL. In late 2010, the railroad purchased their fifth locomotive, a GP50 #2010. This engine is a former Chicago North Western unit.

References[edit]

External links[edit]