Re: [Non-DoD Source] Re: [RealSTMFC] Stencil On CB&Q Boxcar

Gatwood, Elden J SAD

To add:  I read a group of letters between PRR and a customer where PRR billed the customer for clean-out of a gondola where PRR got back loaded with trash and most damaging, oil drums full of waste oil that had toppled, drenching the entire floor in filthy oil.  It was a wooden floored gon, so the oil penetrated the flooring, and dropped all over the yard where it was discovered.  PRR had to drill holes in the sides and floor to drain it, then used solvent to remove the oil and clean the car up.


I think the reason they treated the car the way they did, rather than charging the customer for a new floor, was that PRR was always so short of gons.


I recreated that car in HO, to entertain my friends and operators, who I expected to bad order when it came on-layout.  The drip marks down the side are prominent.


Everyone needs some bad order cars.


And we wonder why rail yards are so contaminated!


Elden Gatwood



From: <> On Behalf Of Gatwood, Elden J SAD
Sent: Tuesday, February 23, 2021 5:42 AM
Subject: Re: [Non-DoD Source] Re: [RealSTMFC] Stencil On CB&Q Boxcar




There are literally tons of correspondence on violations of instructions & stenciling I have read, where RRs like PRR, P&LE and P&WV wrote to their counterparts or customers, sometimes sending them a bill for clean-up or replacement of dedicated equipment.  It was a very common occurrence.


Destroyed or disposed of dedicated equipment was especially costly, while shovel-out and/or steam-cleaning less so.  Loss of things like cross-bars and belts, were very expensive, since you had to go back to Evans, for example, for replacements.


Don’t get me started on damage to cars!


Elden Gatwood



From: <> On Behalf Of Todd Sullivan via
Sent: Monday, February 22, 2021 3:29 PM
Subject: [Non-DoD Source] Re: [RealSTMFC] Stencil On CB&Q Boxcar



Another form of an answer to your question about penalties is this:  We had a Manager of Clerks, R. H. Blackburn, who would likely be the person to have a conversation with you if you screwed up and assigned a really good boxcar to be loaded with gook.  I experienced R. H.'s displeasure one or two times, and it was not something I knowingly would set myself up for.  He would chew you up one side and own the other, turn you inside out and start over.  Not a fun experience.  (To be fair to R.H. he was even-handed, and did a lot of good things for me during my employment.)

OTOH, I suppose some agent in a remote town could assign the car for gook loading and contaminate it, and then pay no penalty, but there were other managers in the field who looked over their shoulders, so they could be caught. 

I'm sure others can chime in with other opinions and experiences.

Todd Sullivan

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