Union Pacific Family Day
at Dolores Locomotive Facility
By Richard Elgenson, RailNews Network
March 20, 2004
Have you ever wondered what the
inside of one of these locomotives looked like...underneath the
hood? Some had rocker
arm covers open and others had enough covers off on both sides that one
could see the reflection of light on the pool of lubrication oil.
locomotives come in for triennial inspections which include draining
out of lubrication oil. On EMD locomotives, power assemblies, a
piston and cylinder, can be removed and replaced. At the tank
farm, there is a 7,000 gallon capacity tank marked soap. Inside
the facility, pipes are marked soap, but appear not to be in use.
Locomotives are hard to keep clean travelling through diverse weather
available in California. UP's locomotives run north from the Los
Angeles area or else east to points through Arizona and Nevada.
As many times as I have driven on
Alameda Street, I was unfamiliar with
the fact that the yellow crane was the sanding facility. While we
were there, locomotives were being dispensed sand. A locomotive
typically has a sand tank on each end. On top of the crane, it
"PAWS" which stands for "Preventing Accidents With Safety."
While the open house was going on,
occasional rail traffic occured on the Alameda Corridor (ACTA)
tracks. First Pacific Harbor Lines number 42 rumbled northbound
with a container train. He later passed by southbound travelling
light. A CSX unit was in line to be serviced at Dolores.
Thank you to Union Pacific for having this open house and for inviting
Operation Lifesaver to participate.