I had for a long time wanted to take a photograph featuring the old disused Üf signal box in Übach-Palenberg. For various reasons it was always inconvenient - the sun wrong, no interesting traffic, or any other of a number of random excuses. With this week's diversion of freight traffic onto the KBS485 and a full day of sunshine in the forecast I used my lunch break for the purpose. Barely minutes after arriving 2839 came into view in the distance with one of the chemical tank car trains that BASF runs. There was a bit of a tense moment when the equally diverted ICE approached from behind but in the end no harm was done.
A mere shade of its former self Übach-Palenberg used to be an important spot on the railroad. It featured a small yard and the junction of one of the many coal branches in the area, this one serving the big Carolus Magnus mine. Helpers were tied onto southbound coal trains here and banked them up the steep incline between Herzogenrath and Kohlscheid, 11 kilometers distant. As usual the mine is now a shopping center, the station has been reduced to nothing but the mainline tracks, the coal comes in from Brazil and South Africa, and all the jobs in the industry are gone.2839 on the 47562 (Ludwigshafen - Antwerp-BASF/B) in Übach-Palenberg.pointduvue, from