o, if we thought we were running a lot of trains in tight confines for the LM&O the other night, we were sadly mistaken. The WAZU (running from Spokane to Portland) was the place to be in Oburg on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Great Guns, but was it a brisk day on the highline!
So, since our last shaky session, we saw a number of improvements. First off, Bill’s card system was in full force this time around. This meant that the yards were busy and there were actually a couple of real life locals in place (maybe Bob K has gotten the bite for this sort of work, you think?). Also improved were the radio communications. I was shocked when I heard how noisy the room was last time. Now, with two radios set aside as phones and a command station in the dispatcher office, things were a lot more controlled (also, I tried to keep my information requests to a minimum).
The session was not without some problems – usually when i dispatch, I’m told that I’m running trains too quickly across the line. Not so today – I slid back to six hours late across the timetable, everything running in the hole. And new trains could not come up to make up the deficit because, even with ten operators, we couldn’t get enough crews off the line to line to pick up new jobs. Weirdly, this six hours behind stayed constant across the session. I simply could not earn it back.
And guys, you gotta look ahead of your trains for turnouts set against you and close those doors behind you. Too many shorts today because of turnout issues. We shouldn’t have any, but we had dozens.
Glad to see Kyle show up and take a couple of trains – he really helped make the session a success by pitching in. And for a newbie, he’s got talent. Once he got the hang of things he was running like a pro. He even wiggled through some of my complex meets.
So hey, we ran everything, got done only one fast hour late, we ran a new card system and firmed up good ops into great ops. And I didn’t crash anyone into anyone else. And, oh yes, having the dispatcher control arrival tracks into the terminus yards worked out well. We weren’t tying up our trains like cars in the mall – everything went into it’s correct spot.
Now, if only the superintendent could stage his own railroad correctly.
But a great session, guys.