At a dedication ceremony held Nov. 10 in Atlanta, Norfolk Southern Corp. named a rail welding facility after the late Hubert Rose, a 43-year NS veteran who retired as the Class I's senior assistant vice president of maintenance of way and structures and planning in 1991.
Rose, who died in January, joined Southern Railway as a surveyor in 1948. In 1971, he was named chief engineer, and in 1976, he was promoted to AVP of maintenance of way and structures.
Rose headed the maintenance-of-way group for 15 years. During his tenure, he led a transition from installing jointed rail, 39- or 78-foot sections of track that are bolted together, to continuous-welded rail, or 1,440-foot sections of rail that are welded together to form one continuous track. Continuous-welded rail is stronger, provides a smoother ride, requires less maintenance and allows trains to travel at higher speeds, NS officials said in a prepared statement.
"Hubert Rose was an industry leader in the maintenance of rail infrastructure, and he is the person most identified with helping Norfolk Southern take advantage of the benefits of continuous-welded rail, saving millions of dollars in maintenance costs and preventing derailments," said NS Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Wick Moorman.
The Atlanta rail fabrication plant opened in 1958. The more than 30-acre complex — which includes plants for rail welding and renewal, switch panels, track panels and rail reclamation — produces quarter-mile strands of rail for use on mainline tracks, and reconditioned rail for use on secondary lines and industrial sidings.
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