Friday, January 8, 2010

Train From Hell Arrives Almost A Day Late

Pulling into Chicago almost a full day behind schedule, one Amtrak passenger recounted "the train from hell," and others are vowing they will never use the rail service again.

Amtrak's California Zephyr arrived 19 hours late full of "tired, hungry and stinky" passengers, according to a story posted on WMAQ's Web site.

Two separate Amtrak trains are having problems of their own, WMAQ said:
  • A Denver-bound train that left Chicago arrived 23 hours late.
  • A San Antonio-to-Chicago train derailed in St. Louis on Thursday, temporarily stranding 176 passengers.
Full story here. Photo from here.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. I suppose we should tear out all roads, too, since they are unusable in harsh snowy weather:

    All Municipal, Township, County, and State roadways are closed to Non-emergency personnel. No one should be out during these conditions unless it is absolutely necessary to travel. Those traveling on the roadways may subject themselves to arrest.

  3. And airports too. Those are never affected by weather.

  4. The point is that roads continue to work even when streetcars and some rails shut down. Pointing out that roads will be shut down when there over a foot of snow doesn't refute that point.

  5. Roads continue to work? Are you kidding, me? Like we saw in the Northeastern Corridor over the holidays by the time the snow and blizzard were strong enough to shut down passenger rail service, the roads were already impassable and the airports had been shut down for days.

  6. Once again, nobody claimed that roads work 100% of the time. And nobody claimed that rails shut down at the first drop of snow.

    What has been shown is that roads frequently still work when streetcars/rails/etc shut down. Part of that is because if an automobile comes up against a broke down vehicle, it can take another road, or even move around it on the same road. Rail is much more limited.

  7. "What has been shown is that roads frequently still work when streetcars/rails/etc shut down."

    No, this has not been shown. Show us several examples -- not coincidences -- that prove roads remain clear and drivable when rail systems shut down or are delayed significantly.

  8. Arlington County, VA Snow Removal Information says:

    Just relax and leave your car at home! Avoid the stress of driving when snow is falling. Ride the subway, catch a bus, hail a taxi, try cross country skis, or enjoy a walk in the snow. Every car left home reduces the number of stranded vehicles that slow down snow control operations. The streets will be cleared faster. And you'll be free to enjoy the winter wonderland.

    The Maryland Transit Authority says:

    Local buses will operate on regular routes as scheduled; however, some routes may be diverted to designated snow emergency routes depending upon actual snow levels.


    Metro Subway and Light Rail maintenance crews will continuously monitor track and catenary wire conditions and remove snow and ice accumulation. When winter weather strikes, MTA regularly uses “snow trains” during overnight hours to keep tracks clear. These are Metro or Light Rail trains that will continue to move along tracks during late night/early morning hours when the systems are closed. Additionally, snow removal crews are prepared to remove snow and ice from Metro Subway and Light Rail parking lots and station entrances and sidewalks. Mobility will operate as close to its schedule as possible.

  9. And look at these! The streets had to be plowed for the cars, but the rails could remain "snowed in" and the MAX still runs.


We follow the "living room" rule. Exhibit the same courtesy you would show guests in your home.