Thursday, April 8, 2010

Grind 'n Squirt

A look at the calendar for Monday April 5 told me to go to Hawley after lunch. Meetings were scheduled for afternoon and evening, but I fetched the camera along just because. Just west of Perham, something appeared in my vision far ahead on the tracks. I quickly overtook it and discovered Loram rail grinder RG319 hard at work on the curve between Perham and Frazee, rounding off the ball on Main 1.

Since the sun was not yet far enough west for a nicely lit shot, I ended up with these. The dry spring must have made the railroad very aware of fire danger, as the Loram crew was applying a liberal coat of water to the right-of-way as the grinder did its work.

Seems that only the curves were being ground, as the sparks had quit blying and the water was already slowing down when I got this shot of the tail end of the train.

Even with this level of fire protection, I suspect fires are possible in the ROW. The area between New York Mills and the overpass west of their has recently burned, and it seems rail grinding could be the cause. This isn't the first time I have seen a fire that may have been a result of rail grinding operations.

Since I wasn't able to head for home until well after dark, this turned out to be the only train of the day for me. Still, it was fun to see something out of the ordinary.


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