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Rail News Home High-Speed Rail

11/20/2009



Rail News: High-Speed Rail

Ohio to consider running DMUs on proposed 3C corridor


Yesterday, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) passed a motion asking Ohio Rail Development Commission staff to explore the use of diesel multiple unit (DMU) vehicles on the state’s proposed 3C “Quick Start” intercity passenger-rail line.

The commission wants to have an equipment plan in place when the state gets word on whether it has received federal high-speed stimulus funds, possibly by late January, according to ORDC. The agency is proposing a 79 mph passenger-rail connection between Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton and Cincinnati. On Oct. 2, ORDC submitted a Track 2 application to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) seeking $564 million in stimulus funds.

ODOT and ORDC staff recently visited other states to observe both DMUs and conventional passenger trains pulled by a locomotive. Officials believe DMUs are more cost effective, and fuel and emissions efficient than conventional passenger trains. In addition, they can carry more passengers with fewer cars than were originally indicated in the ridership study Amtrak conducted for ORDC, according to the commission.

Currently, only one U.S. manufacturer makes a DMU that is compliant with FRA-mandated crash standards: U.S. Rail Car, which recently purchased the former Colorado Rail Car.


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