Erie Lackawanna 'erielack' E-Mail List Photo Archive

image002.gif   Original: 323 by 153 pixels - Current: 323 by 153 - 100%
                          Try your mouse wheel too!

Previous Image - DSCN2293.jpg (No Next Image)

From: "Olszewski, Ed" ed DOT olszewski AT lmco DOT com
Date: Sat, 02 Aug 2008 09:36:01 -0400
Subject: Hurricane Diane Detour trains over the Utica Branch of the S&U
"image002.gif" - image/gif, 323x153+0+0 (24bit)

Folks, as promised I am providing the first of several summaries of
information I have gathered and/or received from folks on and off this
list regarding the operations of the S&U. This information is being
collected for a clinic I am preparing and a future Diamond article. I
hope you enjoy it and if you have corrections or additions, and
especially photos of the detour trains or the Army locomotives on the
S&U, please do not hesitate to provide them.

Most of the information for this article was compiled from "29 Days
since Diane - the DL&W Detour trains by Rich Jahn, an article in "Flags,
Diamonds and Statues" Volume 19, #1, published by the Anthracite
Railroads Historical Society


Ed Olszewski


By Ed Olszewski

On the night of August 18, 1955 Hurricane Diane stalled over the
Pocono's dumping five to 15 inches of rain on the already storm soaked
area in a matter of hours. Earlier in August Hurricane Connie had dumped
a considerable amount of rain on the same area which had not completely
drained off when Diane hit. The run-off caused by the high amount of
rain from Diane caused streams and rivers in the area to swell and rise
some 30 feet in a matter of 15 minutes. The bridges in the area where no
match for the quickly rising waters, as a result the DL&W experienced
105 washouts, slides, and damaged bridges over more than 60 miles of
track east of Scranton. With their mainline severed, the Lackawanna
setup a number of detour routes for their passenger and freight trains.
One of the detour routes included the Utica branch of the S&U.

Beginning August 21, 1955 a portion of the DL&W freight traffic to and
from Hoboken, NJ was detoured over the Utica branch for interchange with
the NY Central in Utica, NY. The NYC routed the trains to Selkirk then
down the West Shore Line to the 17th Street interchange with the DL&W in
Hoboken. The first trains to detour east bound were A/BH-9, NE-4, BH-8,
and BH-4. A/BH-9 arrived in Hoboken at 8:15 AM on the 21st and the
motive power was serviced, turned, and at 1:10 PM on August 21st used to
pull the first west bound detour train, Extra 661, back over the Utica
Branch. This detour traffic lasted eight days until August 28, 1955.
There were a total of 25 trains east and west bound detoured over this
route, Table 1.

Table 1: Detour Trains over the Utica Branch

The DL&W experienced a shortage of road power because of the many detour
routes and the extended mileage their locomotives had to travel. Also,
17 passenger and freight locomotives were stranded along the 60 miles of
damaged track. To help alleviate their power shortage the DL&W turned to
the Army leasing 15 MRS-1's on August 25, 1955. Six of these locomotives
were delivered immediately while the remaining nine were delivered
August 27th after the Army pulled them out of long term storage and
prepared them for use. These locomotives were numbered 1812 - 1817,
B-2046, B-2051, B-2053, B-2059, B-2060, B-2062, B2066, B2069, and
B-2070. On September 2nd five of the Army locomotives were sent to the
S&U to help with local service, seven went to Scranton for yard, pusher
and work train service, and the remaining three went to Kingston, PA
after the last of the stranded locomotives was recovered and returned to
service. Five of these locomotives, B-2060, B-2062, B2066, B2069, and
B-2070, were returned to the Army on September 19th. It is not known
which of the Army locomotives served the S&U but one could postulate
that it was these five locomotives.


Click Here or on the corner X to close this window.

    All photos are the property of the original photographer unless otherwise noted and are to be used for personal viewing purposes only.

    The use of these photos on any website or other distribution media is strictly forbidden without the express consent of the image copyright holder.

    Linking directly to this page is permitted as long as " Erie Lackawanna Email List Photo Archive" is creditted on the linking page.