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May 11, 2018

Signaling Project Review – PTC Projects in Alabama

As the PTC mandate approached its end-of-2018 deadline, railroads began looking for companies who could complete large scale construction on tight deadlines. Norfolk Southern awarded R. J. Corman Signaling with the job of upgrading or fully installing PTC in 37 locations. The job began in November of 2017 in Montgomery, Alabama and was concluded at the end of April 2018 in Mobile.

 

A bore team and four signal construction crews worked back-to-back schedules to complete the project. Various pieces of equipment were used throughout the process such as: signaling boom trucks, hi-rail dump trucks, excavators, a horizontal bore machine, back hoes, a hi-rail pickup, crew trucks, gooseneck trailers and a cable plow. They installed berm walls, along with a significant amount of backfill rock to raise elevation of low lying areas, including swamp areas. Berm walls are very time consuming to install, however, they provide a necessary resolution to low lying areas. The bore team pushed 2” and 4” pipes under roads or railroad tracks to allow for cable installation. R. J. Corman Signaling installed over 23 miles of cable for switch controllers alone, with some runs being two miles long, consecutively. Nearly 400,000 feet of cable was installed for the project. With the cable plow, they have the ability to do upwards of 4 miles in a single work day.

 

R. J. Corman Signaling completed the project ahead of schedule, even with the addition of five locations increasing the total number of locations to 42. Their priorities are providing safe and efficient service while striving to exceed customer expectations. R. J. Corman Signaling has been successful in turn-key construction, PTC testing, in-service plans and cut-in assistance.