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News Photos: Amtrak testing on the Point Defiance Bypass

By | January 18, 2021

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A northbound Amtrak Cascades test train slows at CP Hilltop for the 2.2% downgrade for the final miles into Tacoma, Wash., during weekend testing on the Point Defiance Bypass. (Robert Scott)

For the first time since a fatal derailment in December 2017, Amtrak trains ran on Washington’s Point Defiance Bypass, the intended passenger-only route to shift trains off the coastal line shared with BNSF Railway freight traffic. Test trains on Saturday and Sunday on the 14-mile line between Tacoma and Nisqually Junction are for familiarization and certification of train crews [see “Digest: Amtrak to run test trains …,” Trains News Wire, Jan. 8, 2021]. No date has been announced for resumption of service via the bypass.

A train negotiates the 2.2% downgrade into central Tacoma. (Robert Scott)
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