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MBTA, Keolis gear up for winter weather

The MBTA has bought more than 50 new pieces of snow removal equipment.
Photo – Keolis Commuter Services

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) and its commuter-rail operator Keolis Commuter Services have made a series of investments and operational changes to prepare for severe winter weather.

The MBTA has purchased 52 new pieces of snow removal equipment, including 10 snow fighters. In addition, the agency's locomotives have been outfitted with new traction motors that are better able to withstand severe winter weather conditions, Keolis officials said in a press release.

Crews also installed heaters on critical switches. In the event of significant snowfall, trains will run continuously even when empty to keep the tracks clear of snow.

"We know that winter can be a challenge here in Massachusetts," said Keolis Commuter Services General Manager David Scorey in a video last month. "With all of the investment in extra equipment, with all of the planning activity, with all of the exercises we've run, I can tell you we've never been more ready."

In February 2015, severe winter weather led to numerous delays and disruptions for MBTA's commuter-rail system.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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