Freights: No Clearance Cards at West Roanoke or Bluefield?

nw-mailing-list at nw-mailing-list at
Sat Oct 9 21:40:23 EDT 2004

A. Burnett of the T.S.
I can't tell you why trains didn't get clearance cards at West  Roanoke.  I 
be able to shed some light on Bluefield.  It was "RD", the  interlocking at
the east end of the yard which controlled the crossovers, turnouts,  etc.  You
no doubt recall the procedure leaving Bluefield--go to the east end,  couple
and cut the air in, then knock off 30(?) hand brakes, double to another  track
and do the same.  It took coal trains some time before they were ready  to
leave.   Why give an eastbound a clearence card at Bluefield  when "RD" could
do it ?  Some time AFTER "RD" was turned into a signal bungelow,   orders
were left at the East Yard office and Radford Division conductors pulled  them
off a clip, but NO clearence card was issued.  Now that was a cause of  
to the Safety Department.  Incidentally, "RD" was an acronym for  Radford
Division.   Upon combining the Radford, Shenandoah, and  Norfolk Divisions
to make the Virginia Division, the railroad elected NOT to rename the
interlocking "VD".
                                                     Harry Bundy
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