UP Transports Olympic Flame

The 1996 Atlanta Games marked the first time the Olympic flame was carried by rail. Union Pacific built a special-edition cauldron car with a 2-million BTU burner that displayed the flame on the journey. The event was only the third time in its history that the railroad painted a locomotive in custom colors other than its noted Armour Yellow. On April 26, the Relay Train began a 40-day, 3,500-mile run from Yuma, Ariz., to Chicago, greeting well-wishers throughout the Southwest, South and Midwest. In all, the torch traveled more than 15,000 miles in 84 days.

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Public safety has always been an important initiative for Union Pacific. Today, train crews use whistle signals as a backup to radio communications and to communicate with the public and non-radioed personnel. The most important signal for the public is this whistle pattern: two long, one short and one long — the indication that a train is approaching a highway-rail crossing.

In 2012, Union Pacific celebrates the shared stories that have shaped our country since 1862. To mark our 150th anniversary, we invite you to explore how the nation’s largest railroad came to be and how UP continues to build America with innovation and tenacity, touching the lives of nearly every citizen.