varied mixture of Alco/MLW, GM and a few GE diesel locomotives have
switching duties in Atlantic
Switching on Canadian Pacific was performed by
Alco RS-23s in New Brunswick and by GM SW1200RSs, in either their
original or rebuilt states, on the Dominion Atlantic Railway (DAR) in
has now sold its trackage in Atlantic Canada and New Brunswick Southern
operates on former CP trackage in New Brunswick and the Windsor
Hantsport Railway took over part of the DAR trackage in Nova Scotia
(the rest was abandoned). See Shortlines
in Nova Scotia.
very dirty RS-23 in need of cleaning and painting! Seen outside the old
shops at Saint John NB 9 October 1977. Most of this trackage has since
we see two cleaner RS-23s outside the new shops at Saint John, NB on
15 September 1989. The first is in the livery of the short-lived CP
Rail subsidiary - the Canadian Atlantic Railway. The trackage has now
been sold and the New Brunswick portion is owned by the Irving
interests and is called the New Brunswick Southern Railway while the
Maine & Quebec portions were purchased by Iron Horse Railroads
and were called the Canadian American Railroad - it too was purchased
by the Irvings and became the Eastern Maine Railway.
The DAR in Nova Scotia was separate from the CP
Rail lines in New
Brunswick and used SW1200RSs for all duties (except passenger services
which used two Budd cars as single units). Here we see 8138 &
1273 at Hantsport on 18 August 1990. When the DAR was sold to the
Windsor & Hantsport Railway the SW1200s were kept by CP and
instead the W&H received RS-23s (see page on shortlines &
industrial operations in Nova
A mixed train ran
from Windsor to Truro and back
until the end of the 1970s. Here we see SW1200RS 8132 bringing the
mixed into Windsor NS on 17 October 1979. Further information and
pictures can be seen in the page on Passenger Operations
in Atlantic Canada.
The main freight operations for the DAR and its successor the WHRC were
the haulage of gypsum from the mines near Windsor NS to the shipping
terminal at Hantsport for which a series of air operated dump cars were
used in trains of 25 cars (less in WHRC operations). CP & WHRC
had a connection with CN at Windsor
Junction. From there CP (but not WHRC) had running rights to Rockingham
Terminals in Halifax which they used until the late 1970s. Here CP 8133
& 8137 (in new & old liveries) are returning with four
grain cars of flour for a bakery and a box car in June 1973.
In the 1970s and
1980s Canadian National switching was generally performed by Alco/MLW
S-7, S-12 and S-13 units as well as GM SW1200RSs.
Two late model S-4s - 8193 & 8192 are
switching cars in the
Moncton yards on 14 June 1982.
CN 8233 is an S-7 and is entering the
Rockingham with a car carrier and two cabooses in April 1973. The S-7
was a Canadian version of the S4 and was only built by MLW for 3 months
in 1957 and all 29 were sold to Canadian National.
we see S-12 8238 with COFCs at Ocean Terminals Halifax NS in May 1975.
This model was also unique to Canadian National and only 11 were built
by MLW over four months in 1958.
The S-13 was similar to the S-12 but the 539
engine was replaced by
a 251C. Both units can be distinguished by the higher body which
necessitates a step in the walkway towards the front of the locomotive.
8518 is seen at Moncton shops on 24 March 1989.
size difference between the S-4 8192 and the S-13s 8606 & 8612
clearly seen as they shunt cars at the Moncton yards.
From the mid 1970s
to the late 1980s SW1200RSs dominated the local scene in the Halifax
performing switching and transfer duties as well as freight haulage
along the South Shore to Bridgewater and Lunenburg. A few returned to
the area in 1998.
1330 switches the maintenance and piggyback yards at Fairview NS in
June 1976. Note the wide assortment of freight cars.
1334 with two cabooses and a string of oil tanks leaves the Dartmouth
yards for the Imperial Oil refinery and passes the old Dartmouth
station probably in the fall of 1972.
1335 (note old style number) arrives at Southwestern Junction with two
empty FGE/UP reefers in May 1974. The crew are using the telephone in
the hut to request permission to enter the mainline near Fairview and
will then back their train into the Rockingham yards.
this picture we see SW1200RS 1329 paired with RS-18 #3661 on a transfer
freight between Dartmouth and Halifax via Windsor Junction, NS in
the S-7s & S-12s were retired some of the S-13s were rebuilt
the 8700 series as switchers and into 100 or 300 series as hump yard
units which were paired with slugs built from S-3s. All of these units
have now been retired.
S-13R 8700 is switching the
Dartmouth NS yards with 8705 in February 1996.
we see two S-13s which have been rebuilt for hump yard duties pausing
the Moncton hump on 4 August 1990. 110 is set up as a lead unit and 119
as a trailing unit; the two slugs are 164 & 356 (both built
duties in the 1980s at Moncton, New
Brunswick, were also carried out by GP38-2ms
with slugs. Initially these were numbered in the 7500
series but were later renumbered into the 200 series. The slugs were
specially built by GMD in 1978 & 1980. Here we see Geeps 224
& 222 with slugs 282 & 280 pushing cars up the hump in
use at Gordon Yard Moncton was discontinued about 1997.
a brief period in September 1993 mother GP38-2m 7530 and slug HBU-4 526
appeared in Dartmouth.
few rebuilt GP9s with slugs have occasionally appeared in the region.
see "mother" GP9RM 7271 with "daughter" (slug) 271 in the
yards on 1 July 1994. In 1999 and 2000 a mother and slug operated at
Ocean Terminals in Halifax.
1994 GMD1s 1900 - 1902 & 1910 arrived at Moncton. Then in 1997
GP40s in the 9300 series took over many of the switching duties in the
Moncton yards. These were withdrawn and sold in early 1998 and were
replaced for a short while by rebuilt GMD1s in the 1400 series then by
7100 series "Sweeps". These were then followed by GP9RMs, some with
slugs, but other life-expired units such as GP38-2s and GP40-2s have
been used, presumably until they have a major breakdown. By 2010 very
little switching was done at Moncton and usually GP38-2 and GP38-2Ws
1998 switching in the rest of Atlantic Canada was briefly taken over by
a few GM SW1200RSs, by the rebuilt version (without the characteristic
cylindrical exhaust manifolds) in the 7300 series and by SW1200RMs
"SWEEPS" in the 7100 series (SW1200RSs with components from scrapped
GP9s including a cut down front hood). In late 1998 a number of GMD1s
appeared in the Halifax area but within a year all four models had
2000 rebuilt GP9Rs in the 7000 or occasionally 4000 series and an
occasional GP38-2 carried out switching, yard and transfer duties. A
few years later, GP38-2
& GP38-2Ws and sometimes a GP40-2 predominated.
number of switching operations has been reduced and now there are
usually two GP9, GP38 or GP40 locomotives (or their variants) in
Halifax, Dartmouth, Truro, Moncton & Edmundston. When necessary
mainline freights stop to pick up loads from remote locations not
easily serviced by these yard switchers. However, since about 2010,
high horsepower mainline units including
GE Dash 8s
and GM SD70Is and SD75Is have
often been used as yard switchers at Rockingham and sometimes in
two unrebuilt GMD1s 1901 & 1900 originally equipped with steam
generators (hence the grilles on the end of the short hood) are attired
in different liveries at Moncton on 3 August 1996.
GP40 9304 is switching Moncton yards on 2 August
GMD1s 1418 & 1421 are switching Moncton yards on 9 July 1998.
Note the absence of grilles allows the CN logo to be placed higher on
(SWEEP - SW & GP units combined) 7101 is seen at Dartmouth on 4
1998. The GP9 body is clearly evident and the dynamic brake housing has
been opened up to allow an air-filter to be installed.
7304 is seen at Dartmouth coupled to 7101 seen in the
picture above. Note that the cylindrical exhaust manifolds have been
was one of the first rebuilt GP9s to work in the region and is seen at
yards on 15 August 1998. Note the unusual location of the bell on these
& GP38-2 4728 switch Dartmouth yards on 25 March
GP40-2W 9670 & GP38-2 4727 switch Dartmouth yards on 21
switches Truro yards on 19 August 2003. HATX SD45-2 914 on
lease to the CBNS is in the background.
GE Dash 8-40CM
is in use as the yard switcher at Rockingham on 30
Dash 8-40C 2125
(ex UP) is the Rockingham switcher on 17 August 2011.
SD75I 5701 and
a sister unit are switching Dartmouth yards on 29 May
2006 before taking cars to Burnside On some occasions the power from
gypsum train is used for local switching duties in Dartmouth or even