Downed Power Line Results in Amtrak Northeast Corridor Delay, Landslide Shuts Down Rail Service in Pacific Northwest

By Paul Riegler on 14 April 2017
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Passengers at Penn Station earlier in the week.

Passengers at Penn Station earlier in the week.

Amtrak service in the Northeast as well as several of the nation’s busiest commuter rail systems experienced significant delays after a New Jersey Transit train with 1,200 passengers on board was stuck in a Hudson River tunnel between New York and New Jersey for almost three hours.

“Northeast Corridor service is delayed between New York and New Jersey due to overhead power issues on the west side of New York Penn Station,” said Amtrak in a statement at 6 p.m. “Amtrak engineering forces are currently working to restore power in the south tube of the Hudson Tunnel. Customers should expect delays between New York and Newark, NJ until power is restored.”

Officials said that an overhead power problem resulted in the train becoming disabled around 3:25 p.m. local time on Friday. The power line is maintained and provided by Amtrak.

The problem is also affecting thousands of commuters who are stuck in New York’s Penn Station instead of making their way home. Many NJ Transit lines are posting delays of up to 90 minutes as of 6 p.m. Long Island Rail Road officials also warned of “some cancellations and delays” in and out of Penn Station.

The tunnel closure is the third Amtrak-related problem that has caused significant delays and train cancellations in as many weeks.

In addition to the Northeast Corridor issue, Amtrak also said it had to suspend Amtrak Cascades and Amtrak Coast Starlight service between Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon, due to a landslide.

“Normal rail operations continue north of Seattle and south of Portland to Eugene, Oregon,” the railroad said in a statement at 4:30 p.m. PDT, adding it is “seeking alternate transportation” for those passengers affected by the track closure, which is expected to last 48 hours.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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