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Friday, January 11, 2013    

Texas State Railroad tests connection to Union Pacific line

The Texas State Railroad (TSRR) on Tuesday tested a new section of track that was completed in November. The 2.8-mile section connects TSRR's line to a Union Pacific Railroad line in Palestine, Texas.

The last time the line was used commercially was by the Texas South Eastern Railroad in December 1969, TSRR officials said in a prepared statement.

The test run enabled TSRR engineers to familiarize themselves with UP's line and yard, as well as with the dispatching protocols for a TSRR train when it's operating on the Class I's track, they said.

"This new connectivity means two things for the TSRR. First, it means the pursuit of short-haul freight contracts can now commence," TSRR officials said. "Secondly, the extension of the line allows [us] to bring in additional rail cars for special events."

TSRR is owned by Iowa Pacific Holdings L.L.C., which acquired American Heritage Railway of Texas L.L.C. in August 2012. Under a contractual agreement with the Texas State Railroad Authority, American Heritage Railway of Texas operates TSRR between Palestine and Rusk. American Heritage Railway of Texas was renamed the Rusk, Palestine and Pacific Railroad L.L.C., but continues doing business as the Texas State Railroad.

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