New GO engine sputters to a halt
Published: February 28, 2008

It was the brand new $5-million engine that couldn't -- GO that is.

Just 41 days after GO Transit's first of 27 stronger, faster, sleeker MP40 locomotives was introduced, one slowed, then ground to a halt yesterday on a Lakeshore East run.

Passenger Brent Divell said his train came upon the breakdown at 3:13 p.m., "right in the middle of the track," where its riders "waited an hour for us to come along."

While overhearing the crew talking on radios, Divell said the engineer on his train pushed the stalled one onto a siding east of White's Rd., which took about 45 minutes.

The handicapped auto mechanic said two freights on the main tracks were delayed, "but a Via train got through."

After the shunting, Divell's train was uncoupled, but had to wait for another eastbound GO to pass before it got underway to the Pickering station, carrying passengers from the broken-down one.

"It was rush-hour," he said. "We had a full load."

There were no hints of what the new engine's trouble may have been, Divell said.

"It's just one of those things," he said. "They're brand new, like a new car, which can blow up.

The delay, "doesn't bother me," Divell chuckled. "You get there when you get there."

Divell said GO apologized.

At 4:20 p.m., GO spokesman Stephanie Sorensen said she was not fully briefed on the "delay," but confirmed "a train stopped" and that "affected other trains."

Powered by 4,000-horsepower diesel engines, the 27 MotivePower Industries locomotives built in Idaho cost $143 million.