The transportation railway service moves many tons of supplies and
equipment to support a military mission in a theater of operations;
therefore, most of the trains it operates are freight trains. The two basic
Army diesel-electric locomotives are the 0-6-6-0, 120-ton, 1,600-horsepower
engine and the lighter 0-4-4-0, 60-ton, 400-horsepower engine. Locomotives
are classified according to their wheel arrangement under the Whyte
Each kind of Army railway car has basically the same design except for
its superstructure which is designed for specific purposes. For example, a
boxcar is suitable for carrying freight subject to pilferage or weather
If the need arises, however, a boxcar can be used to transport
other types of freight or troops. The caboose at the rear of the train is
used mainly to carry the train conductor and rear brakeman. Emergency and
safety equipment are also stored in it for use when accidents or breakdowns
occur on the road.
Army rail equipment is inspected and maintained
according to regulations drawn up to correspond with rules prescribed by the
ICC and the AAR for commercial rail equipment.
Army publications specify
the forms to be used in the inspection and maintenance of equipment.
Now that you have had a brief description of the three basic parts of
a train--the locomotive, the rail cars, and the caboose--and a short
discussion on the publications governing the inspection and maintenance of
Army rail equipment, the next chapter gives a detailed discussion of the