Companhia Paulista de Estradas de Ferro

The End of the Future: The Scrapping of the Electrification in the Former C.P. Lines

Confusions will be my epitaph
As I crawled a cracked and broken path
If we made it, we can all sit back and laugh...

The electrification of the Companhia Paulista lines, which started in the early twenties by the hands of giants like Francisco de Monlevade and Jayme Cintra, was steadily expanded steadily up to the late fifties. It was only first questioned in the early seventies. However, the Oil Crisis and the sky-rocketing oil prices that prevailed during the seventies and early eighties prevented the supression of the system. However, simultaneously with the first privatisation rumours, during the middle nineties, the CP electrification system was temporarily deactivated; specialists argued that it was too old and with many maintenance problems. No wonder - no major modernization or revamping took place during the last forty years... Good sense prevailed and some months later the system was reactivated. Unfortunately, after the privatisation of FEPASA in 1999, the electrification lines were immediatedly swiched off, although the equipment was kept intact. However, in December 1999, railfans noted that the catenary lines are being dismantled in several points of the former CP lines. The governamental agency which takes care (?!) of the railroad super-structure alleged that this is being done to avoid the robbery of the copper wires. However, the system is being too heavily damaged, probably beyond of economical feasible recovery, as the photos of distorted wire supports shown below. These facts apparently confirm the end of the legendary electrification of the former Companhia Paulista. Brazil, the so known country of the future, is indeed making a "great" debut in the 21st Century, just in the moment that oil prices are soaring again...

The lyrics in this Special Section were extracted from the song Epitaph, from the King Crimson album In the Court of Crimson King.

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Last Update: 06 September 2003

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