yards or terminals. Without adequate yards and terminals, main lines
Whenever possible, terminal yards should contain
tracks for receiving trains, classifying cars, and making up trains
The tracks in these yards should be long enough to
hold the longest train to be operated on that rail division.
Facilities are needed to spot cars, unload them, and promptly return
the empties to service.
A terminal should include an engine-house,
car repair tracks, fuel and water stations, and buildings to house
crews of the railway battalion. The heavy repair and maintenance of
rail equipment require adequate shops, located at or near yards and
(2) Single, double, or multiple track.
Train density and
overall rail capability are greatly affected by the type and number
of tracks. If there is a usable double track, trains may operate in
both directions without delays in
transportation railway service often takes the usable parts of a
damaged double track to make one single main line with good passing
(3) Seasoned roadbed, good ballast, and heavy rail.
roadbed, ballast, and weight of the rails affect the speed and weight
of trains. If the railway with the most seasoned roadbed, the best
interruptions in train operations caused by washouts and buckled rail
is generally reduced.
(4) Slight grade and curve. Operating trains in mountains with
steep grades requires more motive power.
Steep grades usually
require pusher engines at the rear of a train, two or more
locomotives pulling or doubleheaded at the front of a train, or
Strong pulling and sudden braking are hard on rail
cars; they require more maintenance than those used on fairly level
Running time over a railway is greatly increased if the
line has sharp or long curves.
A speed that can be reached on a
straight run of track cannot be maintained on curving track.
ideal railway, with no grades and no curves, is never realized, but
the rail lines with the slightest grade and fewest, gentlest curves
should be selected.
(5) Adequate sidings and spurs.
Sidings and passing tracks
should be long enough to permit the longest train on the division to
clear the main-line track completely.
Spurs are short rail lines
extending from main lines that can be used to load and unload cars or
to store cars; if they are long enough, one train can be held