21769-Towing Locomotive Going Up thepIncline in Passing a Steamer From One
Lock Level to Another, Panama Canal.
In passing a vessel through the locks of
the Panama Canal a regulation provides
that it shall not go through under its own
motive power, but is towed through by elec-
tric locomotives operating on the tracks
upon the lock walls.
This view shows the Control House at
the upper end of the lock which has been
built to house the delicate machinery that
operates the locks. On the incline making
the ascent is seen one of the locomotives,
while the vessel that is being towed shows
its upper deck and rigging just above the
wall of the lock.
These locomotives were originally de-
signed by canal engineers to facilitate cer-
tain parts of their work, and are of unique
character. Their traction power is derived
from the saw-like middle rail into which
their wheels fit by means of cogs. They
have extra horizontal thrust wheels on the
side next the Canal to overcome the side-
draft of the tow line.
Vessels in being moved through the locks
may not ed'ceed two miles an hour. The
number of locomotives used depends upon
the size of the vessel, the usual number be-
ing four, two ahead and two astern. On the
locomotives themselves are devices for tak-
ing up the slack in the line or in paying out
extra line without moving the locomotive
either forward or backward.
Copyrihit 1915, by The Keystone View Company.