Amtrak HHP-8 with Northeast Regional Train Crossing Susquehanna
An Amtrak Northeast Regional train crosses the Susquehanna River
bridge connecting Havre de Grace and Perryville in northeastern Maryland.
On the point is a Bombardier-Alstom HHP-8 electric locomotive. HHP stands for high horsepower, and the 8
is shorthand for 8,000 hp. The letters led to a humorous nickname for these machines, "Hippo," although the
resemblance of these sleek high-speed locomotives to the bulky four-legged animal goes no further than that!
Like the more plentiful AEM-7 locomotives (*) along the corridor, the "Hippos" were being phased
out at about the time I made this photograph (from the Havre de Grace side of the river), in favor
of Amtrak's choice of the Siemens ACS-64 "Sprinter"-class locomotives (**) as standard power
along the high-speed mainline linking Washington, New York, and Boston.
Thus, it was nice to spend time at favorite locations along the corridor to be able to
document both the Hippos and the "Meatballs" in the twilight years of their careers.
©2018 Steve Ember