Norfolk Southern Indian River Secondary Operations

The Indian River Secondary is Norfolk Southern's branchline serving the coastal areas of Delaware. Stretching from Harrington to Frankford, De, the 38-mile branchline continues south off of the Indian River Running Track at Harrington and includes interchanges with the Delaware Coast Line Railroad at Ellendale and Georgetown before ending at the Maryland and Delaware Railroad interchange at Frankford. The corridor features a mix of unit trains and locals to be discussed in further detail below. Operations are conducted on radio frequencies 160.800 mhz (AAR 46) and 161.070 mhz (AAR 64). Click here for a Timetable of the Indian River.

Unit Trains

62W is a seasonal stone train that originates at H&K's Birdsboro Materials in Birdsboro, Pa, and passes through the terminals of Abrams, Edgemoor and Harrington before arriving at its destination of H&K's Dagsboro Materials in Millsboro, De. The train is usually powered by two or three NS six axle locomotives and varies between 60 and 80 cars in length that are an eclectic mix of second-hand stone cars typically adorned with HKGX reporting marks. During the stone shipping season, which can be most of the year depending on the intensity of winter for a particular year, 62W usually makes two trips per week to Millsboro, utilizing NS' Harrisburg Line to Philadelphia, Amtrak's Northeast Corridor to Edgemoor, the New Castle Secondary to Porter, the Delmarva Secondary to Harrington and the Indian River Secondary to Millsboro. The train's final leg of the journey is most often called out of Edgemoor between 2000 and 0200, though the call time varies based on the inbound train's arrival from Abrams and various other factors. Once the train is put away at H&K's Millsboro facility, an industry switcher is used to unload the cuts of cars until the entire train is empty, typically 12 to 16 hours after arrival.

63W is the empty seasonal stone train that originates at H&K's Dagsboro Materials in Millsboro, De, and passes through the terminals of Harrington, Edgemoor and Abrams before arriving at its destination of H&K's Birdsboro Materials in Birdsboro, Pa. The train utilizes the power and cars off of 62W and generally returns empty tracing 62Ws routing twice per week during the stone shipping season. The train's call time is dependent on when 62W arrived at Millsboro and when the stone cars are finished being unloaded. Due to weather and other circumstances, 63W does not always return empty the evening following the morning of 62W's arrival.

568 is a loaded coal train that operates on the Delmarva Peninsula to NRG's Indian River Generating Station. The trains typically feature two NS six axle road units and 105 loaded coal cars of NS or private ownership. The trains originate from coal mines in the Monongahela coal fields of Pennsylvania and West Virginia, the West Virginia coal fields of Bluefield and even as far away as Wyoming's Powder River Basin. Though these are the current symbols being used for the trains, they change wildy and often. Once arrived at Enola from their points of origin, the trains are called out of Enola any night of the week between 1800 and 2359 and travel the Port Road Branch to Perryville, Md, Amtrak's Northeast Corridor north to Newark, De, the Reybold Branch south to Porter, the Delmarva Secondary south to Harrington and the Indian River Secondary to the generating station. Coal trains rarely make it to Indian River without being recrewed somewhere between Clayton and Houston on their routing. The empty counterparts to the loaded trains operate once the loaded train has been dumped or another set of hoppers from a previous loaded train is ready to go at Indian River. Their symbols also vary frequently and wildy, and while 567 is most often used, other symbols in the 800-series may be used as well. The empty trains are usually called between 2000 and 2359 at Harrington, and the crew must taxi down and make up their train before heading west for Enola.

Local Freights

K42 is NS' Indian River Secondary local, on duty at Harrington Monday-Friday at 0800 and making a roundtrip to Frankford, De on the Indian River. Southbound, the train performs local work at Southern States in Milford, the DCL interchanges at Ellendale and Georgetown, VFL at Indian River, and Mountaire and the MDDE interchange at Frankford. Northbound, the train performs work at Southern States in Dagsboro, U.S. Cold Storage and Growmark in Milford, and Paris Foods at Houston. Of note, the local will usually turn itself on the wye track at Indian River and shove south from there to Frankford before performing local work and starting the trip back north.

K06 are extra crew symbols called out of Harrington any day or the week at any time. Common uses for the symbol is an extra weekend yard job or road train relief.

900 series Norfolk Southern trains are one of a few things. Most of those traveling to the Delmarva will be work trains, operating with symbols such as 920 or 934. These work trains can range from ballast trains to equipment movements and most often occur between December and April when NS tends to perform their trackwork on Delmarva. 904 is the NS symbol for the Track Geometry train, which visits Delmarva once every 12 to 18 months and often runs the Indian River Secondary as far as Millsboro. 951 and 955 are the symbols for the NS Office Car train.

Info current as of February 2016

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