Thursday, September 22, 2011

NJ Transit and Amtrak Again Suffer Power Problems At Hudson River Tunnels

This is an all too common occurrence. NJ Transit trains are stuck in the Hudson River tunnels and require diesel trains to rescue the trains because of power problems.

Not only does this affect all traffic along the Northeast Corridor, but it affects the commutes of people who rely on NJ Transit on a daily basis. Northeast Corridor and North Jersey Coast Line trains are subject to 45-60 minute delays due to single tracking into New York due to power problems. MidTOWN DIRECT trains are being diverted to Hoboken. Crossing honoring with PATH at Hoboken and Newark. So this affects users of PATH and NJ Transit commuters into Hoboken that will experience larger than normal crowds and for which NJ Transit habitually seems unprepared to deal with despite having had such traffic prior to Midtown Direct service (the institutional knowledge of how to deal with the increased traffic seems to have disappeared/been lost).

Amtrak needs to update its power systems along the entirety of the NEC, and doing so would improve the reliability for all uses.

The power systems are on the to-do list for Amtrak, and those improvements can't come soon enough for commuters who can't count on a reliable commute.

New Hudson River tunnels wouldn't solve the problem if the power systems aren't addressed - and that takes money and political effort by the New York and New Jersey delegations to make sure that the money gets to where it is needed.

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