Tuesday, August 19
Just after lunch, on the scanner
at home, I heard today's M-DMOWQM report that it was "approaching the
west switch at Hawkeye", and decided to go to town and see if I could
catch them. I needn't have hurried, the train was stopped when I reached the State St. grade crossing, a van was parked nearby, and the BNSF personnel were holding a conference in front of the lead unit. Power on the DMO today consisted of BNSF 158, 552 and 8059.
The local's first move was to cut off the power and run east for a
pickup. I took pictures of the three units again as they rolled
over the grade crossing: BNSF 158, 552 and 8059. I followed the units through town and caught them as they stopped to line the switches and derails to pick up two ag. chemical tanks. The rails popped and squeaked as the power backed up to couple to the tanks.
I drove back to the State St. crossing (still needing repair) and waited for the DMO to return
with the tank cars. On three tracks, the returning cut faced two
bulkhead flats in the Cascade siding, their train on the main, and a
dozen fuel oil tanks on the Hawkeye siding. Their first move was
to go into the Cascade track , couple and pull the four cars to the east end of the siding.
The power cut off, ran east and went into the Hawkeye track to pick up
the fuel oil. It took about 15 minutes before they were able to
get the air into the fuel tanks, pull out of the siding and shove the main.
A similar delay ensued in getting the air into the train again.
Eventually, they pulled east, picked up the four cars in the
Cascade siding and rolled off toward Knoxville.