Open main menu

Page:Hine (1912) Letters from an old railway official.djvu/169

This page has been validated.

The Size of an Operating Division.

balance which is impossible when jurisdictions divide at the hub. In the latter case each superintendent hurries freight to the end of the division to avoid a paper record showing delay on his territory. The result is that the next man has terminal indigestion because he has been fed too fast. Therefore, divisional jurisdiction should, when possible, change at an outlying district terminal away from a large city. This avoids the added complication due to industrial switching, suburban trains, restricted area, etc., etc. A congestion of cars is often caused by a congestion of jurisdictions. You may avoid the one by diffusing the other. Several roads in the country have saved heavy expenditures for larger terminal facilities by more scientific organizations.

The amount of mileage a superintendent can economically handle depends, then, for the most part upon the location of his headquarters. Such location in turn admits of no hard and fast rule. Cities and towns spring up and industries develop quite regardless of the limits of a hundred-mile freight district and a speed of ten miles per hour on the ruling grade. A railroad usually begins and ends at a large city which is either a seaport or a gateway. It is