: [FJGRailroad] Iraq railway
- Yes it is strange, once again we rebuild a nation that we went to war
with but when we look at our own roads, railroads, bridges, and
factories, they are in such poor shape. Go figure?
On Sun, 27 Feb 2005 22:58:08 -0500 "paul larner" <pklarner@...>
> Nothing for Amtrak though; or the electrical distribution
> >From: "Stephen G. Myers" <Knixrule1@...>
> >Reply-To: FJGRailroad@yahoogroups.com
> >To: FJGRailroad@yahoogroups.com
> >Subject: [FJGRailroad] Iraq railway
> >Date: Sun, 27 Feb 2005 11:42:23 -0500
> >On The Road to Reconstruction
> >U.S. Army spearheads project to help Iraqis repair dilapidated,
> >war-damaged rail system
> >By Walter Weart
> >Its 7 p.m. in Iraq. First Lieutenant Joseph Wanat answers his cell
> >phone, ready to fill in a reporter on U.S. efforts to reconstruct
> >countrys national railroad. The U.S.-Iraqi war has done more than
> >damage or destruction to hundreds of buildings, homes and roads.
> >Combat actions including bombs thrown by Iraqi insurgents and
> >of neglect have wreaked damage on track, communications and signal
> >systems, rolling stock and train stations owned by the Iraq
> Ministry of
> >Transportation and operated by the Iraq Republican Railroad, Wanat
> >Attached to the 888 Movement Control Team, a reserve unit from
> >Providence, R.I., thats now part of Multi National Force-Iraq,
> Wanat is
> >stationed in Baghdad, where his primary assignment is rail
> operation and
> >The U.S. Army is heading a $210 million project designed to
> >Iraqs rail system and restore it to full operation. It wasnt so
> >damage from bombs, but deferred maintenance, looting and vandalism
> >did in the railroad, Wanat says. Economic sanctions against Saddam
> >Husseins regime in the 1990s made it difficult for the Iraqi
> railroad to
> >obtain replacement parts, leading to maintenance deferrals.
> >Many kilometers of track have missing ties, no ballast and large
> >between adjacent track sections, he says. [Our] military was very
> >careful to avoid damaging the lines and only about 10 percent of
> >rebuild project [addresses] weapons damage.
> >In a decade-long decline. The U.S. project budget includes $57
> >for reconstruction work and $153 million for maintenance equipment,
> >rolling stock and spare parts (which are under solicitation or
> >for delivery). Because the Iraqi railroads locomotives were
> produced in
> >six countries including China, Turkey and Germany most spare
> >will be purchased from original suppliers located in those
> >Rail will be purchased from sources in Poland, the Ukraine and
> >Dating back to 1888, when Germany began building track, the Iraqi
> >railroad wasnt always in dire straits. Despite a construction
> >during World War I, the road continued to build branch lines until
> >However, the railroads condition began to deteriorate after the
> >Gulf War.
> >Now, railroad officials are trying to manage operations while Iraq
> >to settle its political future, says Wanat, who has to hang up and
> >back to work. Days later, hes available via phone again. The
> Iraqis are
> >attempting to keep 250 locomotives and 2,000 rail cars going, Wanat
> >Shortly after the U.S. initial combat operations ended in May
> 2003, the
> >railroad operated about 70 trains per week. However, in spring 2004
> >after insurgent gorillas began full-scale operations weekly
> >dropped to about eight, many of which are used for reconstruction
> >efforts, he says.
> >The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers working with the U.S.-run Iraq
> >and Contracting Office (PCO) is providing quality assurance and
> >oversight for the railroad reconstruction, with work being done by
> >firms using Iraqi workers. Some project funding also is coming from
> >Iraqi government.
> >Overseeing the services, supplies and infrastructure work funded by
> >U.S. governments $18.4 billion Iraqi Relief and Reconstruction
> Fund, the
> >PCO is responsible for managing the project, including finances and
> >assets. A key project aspect is rebuilding 76 stations, including
> one in
> >Baghdad, says Wanat, who needs to put down his phone again duty
> >A few days later, with time for one more cell phone call, he
> >the condition of the facility in Iraqs capital. Baghdad Central
> >Station, the Iraqi railroads headquarters and largest station, is
> >extremely poor shape, Wanat says. The plumbing doesnt work,
> theres no
> >central heating or air conditioning system, and most of the
> >doors and windows are broken or missing.
> >On the double. The project has another key component, he says.
> >and Iraqi forces want to finish double-tracking the railroads
> >a project the Iraqis began prior to the war. The mainline stretches
> >miles south from the Syria-Turkish border to Umn Qasr, the primary
> >for marine cargoes.
> >We plan to have the double-track line from Basrah and the Turkish
> >in service by 2008 or 2009, says Wanat, moments before he pushes
> >end-call button to finish tending to his day-long duties.