Arlington Six Flags Locomotive FRACKs lungs – BE like PUFFY

UPDATE:

—– Forwarded Message —–
From: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
To: kim feil <kimfeil@sbcglobal.net>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Sent: Friday, September 25, 2015 3:18 PM
Subject: RE: Question Regarding “Puffy”

Kim,

Below is the response I received from Six Flags:

In response to your inquiry I wanted to summarize our verbal discussion as follows:

Six Flags Over Texas operates a steam train which uses fuel oil number 3, which is a distillate fuel that contains less than 0.3% sulfur by weight. There is a boiler requirement called sand out that is used to clean soot off the tubes. The sand out procedure is done 3 times a day during operation and may occasionally cause gray or black smoke to be visible near the stack for 15 to 20 seconds. During operation there is an engineer and a fireman on the locomotive. It is the fireman’s job to adjust the fuel to air ratio manually using valves turned by hand. The fireman’s goal is to maintain the correct steam pressure even as the load changes (ex. More steam to go uphill and less steam when going downhill). This requires a skilled and experienced fireman who can anticipate changes in steam demand and account for lag times in either increasing or decreasing the amount of heat needed.

An experienced fireperson is able to maintain a full head of steam without causing black smoke to be emitted.  The operators of our steam locomotives are expected to perform their task skillfully and often take great pride in diligently performing their duties.

Occasionally, we will emit black smoke for short periods of times, typically less than 30 seconds, when training other fireman on the sand out process or for other reasons such as an unplanned stop or a need to quickly reduce speed.  While I cannot provide an exact number of instances in which this may occur, I can indicate that I observe the train passing my office area several times per day and rarely see black or gray smoke. 

As part of our review of this situation, I have contacted our operations department and requested that they review their procedures with all steam train fireman and engineers to ensure that they take appropriate measures to reduce or minimize the conditions described as part of the sand out process, to the extent possible.

Thank you for contacting us and making us aware of this concern.  Feel free to contact me directly if you have any additional questions, concerns, or need clarification.

Rickey Jacobs

Safety and Risk Manager

Six Flags Over Texas and Hurricane Harbor

Jody

Jody Purvis Loza

Air Quality Planner

North Central Texas Council of Governments

Direct Line: (817) 704-5609

From: kim feil [mailto:kimfeil@sbcglobal.net]
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 1:57 PM
To: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
Subject: Re: Question Regarding “Puffy”

Thank you so much!


From: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
To: kim feil <kimfeil@sbcglobal.net>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 12:54 PM
Subject: RE: Question Regarding “Puffy”

Kim,

I wanted to ask Grapevine what they were doing to see if there were any suggestions that could be made to Six Flags so their train would run cleaner.  Now that we have the information from Grapevine, I will discuss internally with our air quality folks to see if there is anything we can do to encourage Six Flags to decrease the amount of black smoke coming from their trains.   

We have a couple of people out on vacation, so I will follow up with you later this week.

Thanks,

Jody

Jody Purvis Loza

Air Quality Planner

North Central Texas Council of Governments

Direct Line: (817) 704-5609

From: kim feil [mailto:kimfeil@sbcglobal.net]
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 12:49 PM
To: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Subject: Re: Question Regarding “Puffy”

OK I saw the response further down so when do we outlaw these things? If we are in a non-attainment to ozone category where do we draw the line?


From: kim feil <kimfeil@sbcglobal.net>
To: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 12:46 PM
Subject: Re: Question Regarding “Puffy”

Yes I posted that Puffy was doing the right things…its the SIX FLAGS engine (one of two) that is the offender.


From: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
To: kim feil <kimfeil@sbcglobal.net>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 12:30 PM
Subject: FW: Question Regarding “Puffy”

Kim,

Here is the response I received from the Grapevine Vintage Railroad. From this email, it appears Grapevine is employing best practices when running their diesel and steam engines, but there are no retrofits or alternative fuels being used.  Please let me know if we can be of further assistance.

Thanks,

Jody

Jody Purvis Loza

Air Quality Planner

North Central Texas Council of Governments

Direct Line: (817) 704-5609

From: Jack Bateman [mailto:jbateman@grapevinetexasusa.com]
Sent: Monday, August 17, 2015 7:16 AM
To: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Subject: Re: Question Regarding “Puffy”

Here is what my railroad employees said:

Any black smoke, steam or diesel engine is basically unburnt fuel sent out through the stack. It is a little easier to control on a diesel engine because you control the combustion with the injector pump, timing, etc. On the steam engine we try to run as clean of stack as possible but there are times when it is just impossible to not have black smoke. When you start the train or climb a hill the fireman needs a hot rich fire to be able to keep the pressure up. Result-black smoke. Also when you crest a hill and are about to start down the other side the engineer pushes the throttle in while the fireman reduces the fire. The reaction of the fire is always behind the reaction of the throttle thus creating a burst of black smoke for a short time. Hope this helps.

Jack

Jack Bateman

Managing Director of Sales and Marketing
Grapevine Convention & Visitors Bureau

636 S. Main St.
Office: 817-410-3552

>>> Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org> 8/14/2015 2:56 PM >>>

Mr. Bateman,

I work for the Air Quality team at the North Central Texas Council of Governments and we were recently contacted by a concerned citizen regarding the train that runs through the park at Six Flags in Arlington.  She is asking why the train at Six Flags puts out so much black diesel smoke, yet vintage diesel trains, like “Puffy” do not.  She was wondering what retrofits or modifications Grapevine made to make “Puffy” run clean, and not produce black smoke.

If you could provide any insight to this question, it would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Jody

Jody Purvis Loza

Air Quality Planner

North Central Texas Council of Governments

P.O. BOX 5888

Arlington, TX 76005-5888

Direct Line: (817) 704-5609

Fax: (817) 608-2315

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From: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>

To: kim feil <kimfeil@sbcglobal.net>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 12:30 PM
Subject: FW: Question Regarding “Puffy”
Kim,
Here is the response I received from the Grapevine Vintage Railroad. From this email, it appears Grapevine is employing best practices when running their diesel and steam engines, but there are no retrofits or alternative fuels being used.  Please let me know if we can be of further assistance.
Thanks,
Jody
Jody Purvis Loza
Air Quality Planner
North Central Texas Council of Governments
Direct Line: (817) 704-5609
From: Jack Bateman [mailto:jbateman@grapevinetexasusa.com]
Sent: Monday, August 17, 2015 7:16 AM
To: Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org>
Cc: Jenny Narvaez <JNarvaez@nctcog.org>
Subject: Re: Question Regarding “Puffy”
Here is what my railroad employees said:
Any black smoke, steam or diesel engine is basically unburnt fuel sent out through the stack. It is a little easier to control on a diesel engine because you control the combustion with the injector pump, timing, etc. On the steam engine we try to run as clean of stack as possible but there are times when it is just impossible to not have black smoke. When you start the train or climb a hill the fireman needs a hot rich fire to be able to keep the pressure up. Result-black smoke. Also when you crest a hill and are about to start down the other side the engineer pushes the throttle in while the fireman reduces the fire. The reaction of the fire is always behind the reaction of the throttle thus creating a burst of black smoke for a short time. Hope this helps.
Jack
Jack Bateman
Managing Director of Sales and Marketing
Grapevine Convention & Visitors Bureau
636 S. Main St.
Office: 817-410-3552

>>> Jody Loza <JLoza@nctcog.org> 8/14/2015 2:56 PM >>>

Mr. Bateman,
I work for the Air Quality team at the North Central Texas Council of Governments and we were recently contacted by a concerned citizen regarding the train that runs through the park at Six Flags in Arlington.  She is asking why the train at Six Flags puts out so much black diesel smoke, yet vintage diesel trains, like “Puffy” do not.  She was wondering what retrofits or modifications Grapevine made to make “Puffy” run clean, and not produce black smoke.
If you could provide any insight to this question, it would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you,
Jody
Jody Purvis Loza
Air Quality Planner
North Central Texas Council of Governments
P.O. BOX 5888
Arlington, TX 76005-5888
Direct Line: (817) 704-5609
Fax: (817) 608-2315

END UPDATE


By golly if we can’t ban fracking to get that soot out of our lungs, lets look at other things that are unnecessary and reduce their load on our airshed…we do have the highest asthma rates… I sent an email to our Arlington City Council and to Six Flags (see below) to check on what it is that PUFFY in Grapevine is doing right ….

One of the trains at Six Flags looks & smells like a dang fracking rig. I personally witnessed (twice) black smoke belching out of one of their locomotives at Six Flags recently in Arlington. Best Available Emission Control Technologies (see tips below) is what is needed around breathers. Anything less constitutes reckless & repeated exposures to the employees near these trains and their paths.

Here is a 2011 picture of the offender…

Screen shot 2015-08-14 at 2.36.05 PMAnd here is a 2010 video where the conductor even TELLS the visitors to hold their breath for the tunnel…OMG!…

Below from www.steamlocomotive.com in the green text saying “operational” is seven steam locomotives in Texas that could use some TLC upgrades if they are belching out particulates and VOC’s…soot..etc

Screen shot 2015-08-14 at 1.48.48 PM

Screen shot 2015-08-14 at 1.49.05 PM Screen shot 2015-08-14 at 1.49.14 PM Screen shot 2015-08-14 at 1.49.21 PM Screen shot 2015-08-14 at 1.49.28 PMhttp://www.steamlocomotive.com/lists/searchdb.php?country=USA&state=TX


From: kim feil <kimfeil@sbcglobal.net>
To: “jeff.williams@arlingtontx.gov” <jeff.williams@arlingtontx.gov>; Lana Wolff <lana.wolff@arlingtontx.gov>; Charlie Parker <charlie.parker@arlingtontx.gov>; Robert Rivera <robert.rivera@arlingtontx.gov>; Robert Shepard <robert.shepard@arlingtontx.gov>; Jimmy Bennett <jimmy.bennett@arlingtontx.gov>; Michael Glaspie <michael.glaspie@arlingtontx.gov>; Sheri Capehart <sheri.capehart@arlingtontx.gov>; Kathryn Wilemon <kathryn.wilemon@arlingtontx.gov>; Trey Yelverton <trey.yelverton@arlingtontx.gov>; Jim Parajon <jim.parajon@arlingtontx.gov>; Cynthia Simmons <cynthia.simmons@arlingtontx.gov>; Roger Venables <roger.venables@arlingtontx.gov>; “wtate@grapevinetexas.gov” <wtate@grapevinetexas.gov>; “swilbanks@grapevinetexas.gov” <swilbanks@grapevinetexas.gov>; “sharrons@grapevinetexas.gov” <sharrons@grapevinetexas.gov>; “mlease@grapevinetexas.gov” <mlease@grapevinetexas.gov>; “dfreed@grapevinetexas.gov” <dfreed@grapevinetexas.gov>; “ccoy@grapevinetexas.gov” <ccoy@grapevinetexas.gov>; “dodell@grapevinetexas.gov” <dodell@grapevinetexas.gov>; Jenny Narvaez <jnarvaez@nctcog.org>
Cc: Alyssa Taylor <alyssa.taylor@tceq.texas.gov>; Michael Honeycutt <michael.honeycutt@tceq.texas.gov>
Sent: Friday, August 14, 2015 2:14 PM
Subject: PUFFY/ I saw Six Flags locomotive belching out black smoke like those fracking rigs-
Whatever they are doing in Grapevine (where Puffy isn’t Puffing out black smoke) needs to be done at Six Flags. Recently I saw and smelled/breathed diesel-like (or coal?) particulates from one of the two locomotives at the Park. The offender locomotive was spewing black particulates all over the employees and visitors. THAT IS UNNECESSARY….
This link has information with tips to eliminate that black smoke…how can we get this info into the right hands?

Kim Feil


TIPS per this link www.permies.com “Most of us have seen old films showing the black smoke and soot belching out of old steam locomotives fueled by coal. This link describes the remarkably simple changes made to the fire box of a coal burning locomotive that virtually eliminated smoke and soot. Anyone who has make a serious study of solid fuel gasification could have advised for these kinds of changes. It’s remarkable that this inefficient combustion went on as long as it did. Not only is complete combustion cleaner – it’s a lot more efficient. The efficiency of the old boilers at high output was only 50%, and they went up to 80% at high output after the changes. A combination of complete combustion through gasification, higher steam temperatures, and streamlining the steam delivery and exhaust system was shown to literally double the overall efficiency of steam locomotives from a paltry 6% to 12%. Later, a simple boiler water treatment was found that reduced boiler maintenance in a fantastic way. Boilers now last as long as the locomotive itself, and labor and fuel intensive blowdowns and boiler cleanouts were reduced from a daily affair to annual (for the former), and from monthly to annually (for the latter). The treatment even allows saline water to be used”.


FYI I filed out a hand written complaint almost two weeks ago and have not yet heard back.

—– Forwarded Message —–
From: Six Flags Over Texas <donotreply@sixflags.com>
To: kimfeil@sbcglobal.net
Sent: Friday, August 14, 2015 1:26 PM
Subject: Confirmation: Six Flags Over Texas received your message!

We received the comment you posted about

Thank You For Contacting Six Flags Over Texas!

We received the message you sent via the Six Flags Over Texas website about and will respond soon.

Greetings from Six Flags Over Texas!

This message is just to confirm receipt of the comment you recently left on the Six Flags Over Texas website about . Your message is being forwarded to the appropriate department at the park and we will contact you as soon as possible (definitely within seven days, but usually much sooner).

Thank you for your message, and have a great day!

Sincerely,

Six Flags Over Texas


For your reference, the content of your message is included below.

Message Category

General Comment or Complaint

Message Text

One of your vintage trains needs to be retrofitted with a more current engine for controlling unnecessary emissions. Too many people have asthma and we have had too many ozone days. This does not make you family-friendly in allowing old technology and your employees get repeated exposures. Please contact me to let me know what you will be doing to address this.

Your Name

Kim Feil

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About Kim Triolo Feil

Since TX Statute 253.005 forbids drilling in heavily settled municipalities, I unsuccessfully ran for City Council Seat to try to enforce this. Since Urban Drilling, our drinking water has almost tripled for TTHM's. Before moving to Arlington in 1990, I lived in Norco’s “cancer alley”, a refinery town. It was only after Urban Drilling in Arlington did I start having health effects. After our drill site was established closest to my home, the chronic nosebleeds started. I know there are more canaries here in Arlington having reactions to our industrialized airshed (we have 55-60 padsites of gas wells). Come forward and report to me those having health issues especially if you live to the north/northwest of a drill site so I can map your health effects on this blog. My youtube account is KimFeilGood. FAIR USE NOTICE: THIS SITE MAY CONTAIN COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL THE USE OF WHICH HAS NOT ALWAYS BEEN SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED BY THE COPYRIGHT OWNER. MATERIAL FROM DIVERSE AND SOMETIMES TEMPORARY SOURCES IS BEING MADE AVAILABLE IN A PERMANENT UNIFIED MANNER, AS PART OF AN EFFORT TO ADVANCE UNDERSTANDING OF THE SOCIAL JUSTICE ISSUES ASSOCIATED WITH EMINENT DOMAIN AND THE PRIVATIZATION OF PUBLIC INFRASTRUCTURE (AMONG OTHER THINGS). IT IS BELIEVED THAT THIS IS A 'FAIR USE' OF THE INFORMATION AS ALLOWED UNDER SECTION 107 OF THE US COPYRIGHT LAW. IN ACCORDANCE WITH TITLE 17 USC SECTION 107, THE SITE IS MAINTAINED WITHOUT PROFIT FOR THOSE WHO ACCESS IT FOR RESEARCH AND EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES. FOR MORE INFORMATION, SEE: HTTP://WWW.LAW.CORNELL.EDU/ TO USE MATERIAL REPRODUCED ON THIS SITE FOR PURPOSES THAT GO BEYOND 'FAIR USE', PERMISSION IS REQUIRED FROM THE COPYRIGHT OWNER INDICATED WITH A NAME AND INTERNET LINK AT THE END OF EACH ITEM. (NOTE: THE TEXT OF THIS NOTICE WAS ALSO LIFTED FROM CORRIDORNEWS.BLOGSPOT.COM)
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