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During the five days 14th to 18th March we saw 33 different QJ in action or on shed including the deflectorless yard pilots at Chabuga (6900) and Daban (6884). Of these, three were ex-works in February/March (6911, 7007 and 7143). We also saw 7030 marshalled in an eastbound freight on its way to works.
During the week, we received information on steam working over the Jingpeng Pass resulting from non-availability of diesels - 3 trains on 15th March, 6 on 16th and 6 on 17th. These were 24 hour not daytime totals. On the 17th we saw two westbound steam departures from Daban - the first at about 16:00 and the second around dusk. On the 18th we saw an eastbound steam arrival at Daban at about 12:30. The level of activity over the pass was probably the explanation of the number of single headed trains on the Chabuga - Daban section.
Traffic levels between Chabuga and Daban tended to decline as the week passed by - 10 freight on daylight on 14th and 12 on 15th but, on Friday 18th, traffic levels were low - only 3 freight observed up to 13:00. Overall, traffic was heavier eastbound than westbound with afternoon light engine workings in afternoons. Some westbound freights were short.
7010 worked the passenger on 4 of the 5 days - being replaced by 7104 on the 18th to allow for a boiler washout. Only one diesel was seen working between Chabuga and Daban - on 16th March DF46031 arrived at Chabuga heading an eastbound freight heading for Tongliao depot for maintenance or repair. We also saw another diesel dead in an eastbound freight.
The following QJ were seen in service:
6751, 6825, 6849, 6850, 6851, 6884, 6891, 6900, 6911, 6925, 6978, 6986, 6988, 6991, 6992, 6998, 7002, 7007, 7009, 7010, 7037, 7038, 7040, 7041, 7049, 7063, 7081, 7104, 7105, 7119, 7137, 7143, 7163
Other QJ seen at Daban depot on 18th March were:
Maintenance hall: 6981
Back roads and scrap line: 6632, 6638, 6639, 6729, 6763, 6795, 6828, 6844, 6853, 6876, 6926, 6996 and one unidentified
Front roads: 6630, 6735, 6840, 6882, 6905
We encountered no problems of access at Xishan - the staff we saw were friendly but, given that it was a Saturday afternoon, senior management was probably not present. The depot was locked and therefore not accessible.
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