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CSX Corp. maintenance-of-way workers yesterday launched an eight-day "jamboree" in the Southeast designed to condense trackwork that typically would take 18 weeks to complete.The accelerated timeline will be met by temporarily re-routing traffic on a mainline in portions of three states to provide workers uninterrupted time for track upgrades and repairs.Nearly two-thirds of the Class I's system-wide production teams, division engineering crews, signal workers and bridge forces will be involved in the jamboree, which is more commonly called a track maintenance blitz. Crews will replace or install more than 64,000 ties and 150,000 linear feet of rail, smooth and shape roadbed and ballast over a stretch of 40 track miles, and improve grade crossings.The jamboree is timed to take advantage of historically lighter traffic volume during the Fourth of July holiday week, CSX officials said in a press release. Part of the Class I's $2.3 billion capital spending budget for 2013, this year's jamboree will focus on key routes between Shelby, Ky., and Spartanburg S.C., and from Bostic to Monroe, N.C.In 1999, a CSX machine operator coined the term "jamboree" to describe the mass gathering of MOW crews and equipment in one area."We call it a jamboree because of the strong teamwork and camaraderie that has developed over the years during this maintenance blitz," said Oscar Munoz, CSX's executive vice president and chief operating officer. "The jamboree is a prime example of the investment and effort we dedicate to ensuring that the nation's critical rail transportation network is ready to safely meet the country's growing needs."
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