A new track has been added to the turntable at Grande. It’s certainly not long enough for any of the FCPyF’s locos, and it’s not lined up to act as an over-run for the entrance lead, so what could it be for?
Something a lot smaller! The FCPyF uses an inspection car to check that the module links in the tunnels on the low level line are correctly aligned before any trains are run. It is a lot easier to recover a derailed inspection car than it is to remove a derailed train. On arrival at Grande the inspection car needs to lay over until it can be allocated a path on the single line back to San Fernandez, usually following the first northbound passenger train.
Similar inspection duties on the high level line are carried out by the FCPyF’s Wickham trolley, checking for debris on the track around the mine at Rio and also to make sure the lift out bridges over the doorways are correctly aligned. The Wickham then returns to the trolley stabling spurs at either Mucho Bodjio or Rio Paleta.
In addition to checking the safety of the line the inspection car and Wickham also help with track cleaning. They both run on Bachmann “Underground Ernie” mechanisms with a very short wheelbase so they show up dirty track before it gets bad enough to stall the trains.