Author Topic: Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety  (Read 6661 times)

Vincent "Lightning" LeRow

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Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« on: October 02, 2009, 10:45:32 AM »
Why does rain make cutting rail dangerous?
A spike saved is a spike earned.

Dave Buczkowski

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Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2009, 11:35:21 AM »
Vincent;
Let's see - lightening, heavy rail is slippery, water and electricity (drill is electric powered by generator). As an engineering student you may want to take a class on work place safety. Oh, and working in the rain is miserable.
Dave

Duncan Mackiewicz

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Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2009, 11:48:37 AM »
Cmon Dave, you have no sense of adventure. What's the harm in a bit of rain mixed with electricity....
Duncan

Dave Crow

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Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2009, 12:55:18 PM »
Could we then call him "Sparky"?

Duncan Mackiewicz

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Re: Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2009, 03:25:43 PM »
Very big possibility as it could be an electrifying experience.

Dave Buczkowski

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Re: Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2009, 03:42:23 PM »
I'm not the guy who cancelled it! I could probably use a little jolt of electricity to fluff up my hair. But if Vincent was at the October Deluge then I can understand him wondering why a little rain would upset Dana. Dana may have just had his hair done...
Dave

Mike Fox

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Re: Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2009, 07:07:28 PM »
I see Dave missed our last lesson on Rail Drilling 101. We have a gas powered rail drill. No more extension cords to trip over.

As far as cutting, we cant cut rail until it is drilled. The marks on where to cut stay better when the rail is dry and we have a tendency to get less sick when it is dry also.
 
Generally, rain in the fall sucks to work in.
Mike
Doing way too much to list...

Duncan Mackiewicz

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Re: Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2009, 06:57:42 PM »
Mike. I'll give a big amen to that.  We've worked through more than a few wet fall weekends and they surely aren't pleasent.
Duncan

Josh Lepman

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Re: Rail Cutting Procedures & Safety
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2009, 05:51:42 PM »
RE: Rail Cutting Procedures and Safety
Back in my previous life when I worked for Amtrak on the Northeast Corridor there were times when it was necessary to cut rail in the rain in order to keep the trains moving and at scheduled speed. 
The added safety issue with cutting rail in the rain is that when the abrasive discs (assuming that is the type of saw you are using) get wet they tend to warp and/or disintegrate which can be quite dangerous at around 5,000 RPM's.  What we did was put a dry abrasive disc on the saw, make one cut right away and then dispose of the disc, being sure not to use it again.  We never had any problem that I am aware of following this procedure.  This could prove expensive for a museum if you just HAVE to cut in the rain because under normal circumstances I suspect you can get at least 3 cuts out of a single disc on 60 lb. rail.
Of course any kind of outdoor work is going to be more dangerous in the rain, particularly trackwork where the rails, ties and even the ballast become very slippery.
And whenever using an abrasive rail saw one should always wear hearing protection, two layers of eye protection such as safety glasses plus either a face shield or coverall goggles and lower leg protection.  For the latter I recommend going to a sporting goods store and picking up some hockey goalie or catchers equipment that includes protection for the ankles, lower legs and knees.  If you wear the above equipment you should be able to walk away from an exploding abrasive saw disc and do so without needing a white cane.  Be safe.