Carolina Power & Light Company, doing business as Progress Energy Carolinas, Inc., in December 2004 started leasing 1,150 Johnstown America AutoFlood III aluminum hoppers. This makes for a total of ten 115-car trains worth of hoppers in ten distinct number series. The cars are in dedicated service delivering coal to Progress Energy's Hyco and Mayo plants north of Roxboro, NC. The coal comes from West Virginia mines in the Williamson, WV and Elmore, WV areas among other places. There have been reports that these cars have been used for coal imported at the Port of Charleston, SC.
All 1,150 cars are 4200cf aluminum "AutoFlood III" rapid discharge coal hoppers built by FreightCar America (formerly Johnstown America Corporation) at Danville, IL. The cars have aluminum side and end sheets, with the underside of the slope sheets painted black on each end. A small Progress Energy logo is near the top of the fourth full-height side panel from the right (from the AR and BL corners). Unlike many new aluminum hoppers built recently, the cars are NOT rotary coupler equipped. No noticable lot number(s) are stenciled on the cars.
The position of some of the detailed lettering is different on opposite side of the car. Most noteable is the position of the builder logo, which is in the panel next to the consolidated stencil on the right side of the car, with a panel between them on the left side of the car.
The most noticable variation among the series is the color and amount of reflective material on the car sides. Early series had just five small equal-sized white rectangles of reflective material along the bottom of the car sides. To conform to recently adopted federal regulations, later series have five larger rectangles of yellow reflective material, with the two end-most rectangles larger than the middle three. Two different shades of yellow has been observed on the cars. The first cars with yellow marks displayed a yellow bright yellow, with later cars having markings in a darker shade of yellow. All of the cars have white reflective blocks on the car A and B ends of the car, regardless of the color of the side reflectors. The position of the yellow stripes differs from the position of the white marks; this has resulted in the postion of several detailed dettering marks to vary between the white and yellow marked cars.
A second minor variation concerns the builders logos. Even though Johnstown America rebranded itself as FrieghtCar America at the beginning of 2005, cars still received the old Johnstown America Corporation builders logo until March 2005. Sometime in March 2005, they switched to a new FreightCar America builders logo in the same style as the old logo.
There are also a few 'oops' cars in the bunch. PGNX 1106, 1107, 1110 and 1111 at least were mistakenly marked as "PGXN" on the right side of the cars, while 4176 as marked as PGXN on the left side of the car.
|PGNX Series||Build Dates||Reflectivity|
|5100-5214||02-05||Bright Yellow (5100-5145)|
Dark Yellow (5146-5214)
|8100-8214||03-05||Dark Yellow||JAC (8100-8152)|
|PGNX 0123 near Shawsville, VA on 15 January 2005.|
|PGNX 0214 near Shawsville, VA on 15 January 2005.|
|Three closeup views of the side of PGNX 1132 at Elliston, VA on 5 March 2005.|
|The A end of PGNX 1148 at Elliston, VA on 5 March 2005.|
|PGNX 1158 at Elliston, VA on 5 March 2005.|
|An overhead view of PGNX 1208 at Elliston, VA on 5 March 2005.|
|PGNX 2100 at Christiansburg, VA on 9 April 2005.|
|PGNX 2212 at Christiansburg, VA on 9 April 2005.|
|PGNX 4106 at Montgomery, VA on 12 March 2005.|
|PGNX 6140 at Salem, VA on 5 June 2005.|
|PGNX 7103 at Salem, VA on 5 June 2005.|
|Robb Fisher photographed PGNX 8162 at Roanoke, VA on 21 May 2005. Also see a closeup of the new FreightCar America Logo.|
Joe Shaw --
Last update: Friday, 07-Sep-2012 01:33:32 EDT