One Killed, Dozens Injured in Amtrak Derailment

YAZOO CITY, Miss. – One person was killed and dozens more injured when the northbound City of New Orleans derailed Tuesday (April 6). Meanwhile, members of Amtrak’s customer care team arrived at the wreck scene, about 25 miles north of Jackson, Miss. The team provided assistance for passengers, including accommodations, clothing, transportation and communication. At the time of the wreck, there were 73 people aboard the train – 61 passengers and 12 crewmembers. Injured passengers were taken to six area medical facilities, where most were treated and released; four persons were admitted. One person – 68-year-old Clara L. Downs of

November is Good to Amtrak

December 11, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON — Amtrak ended the busiest November in its 32-year history with a ridership total of 2,076,054, up 11.7 percent over last year’s total of 1,858,345. All 16 long-distance trains posted double-digit gains and, collectively, posted a 32 percent surge in ridership. The most impressive gains were realized on the Capitol Limited (Chicago – Pittsburgh – Washington), up 54 percent; the Sunset Limited (Orlando – New Orleans – San Antonio – Los Angeles), up 50 percent; and the Cardinal (Chicago – Indianapolis – New York), up 51 percent due to a route extension from Washington to New York City. Regional

Isabel Slows Trains

October 1, 2003 The Cross-Tie 0

WASHINGTON — Rail service along the eastern coast was slowed in September because of Hurricane Isabel. Amtrak, CSX, Norfolk Southern and other railroads between North Carolina and New York reported interruptions to their service due to the hurricane. Norfolk Southern implemented its contingency plan, taking extra safety precautions to assure the safety of employees and prevent damage to facilities, equipment, and shipments, the railroad said in a news release. This included moving equipment and shipments that have not yet placed within customer facilities, out of coastal and low lying areas prone to flooding. Likewise, CSX ceased some operations between Virginia

Amtrak Employees May Strike for One Day

September 17, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON – Don’t expect to see any trains Oct. 3 if unions representing Amtrak get what they want. Union leaders have threatened a one-day strike to focus attention on what they are calling gross under funding of the national passenger railroad. Acting Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees President Freddie N. Simpson noted that Amtrak’s President, David Gunn, said Amtrak needs $1.8 billion for Fiscal Year 2004 to maintain its operations. And without that level of funding, Gunn said he will seek to shut down Amtrak nationwide. The US House of Representatives has agreed to provide $900 million in funding

Blackout Halts, Delays Northeast Travel

September 1, 2003 The Cross-Tie 0

NEW YORK — A sweltering heat welcomed passengers to Penn Station Saturday, Aug. 16. A massive power outage left millions without power and thousands more stranded when transportation unable to operate. Commuter rail and subways shut down leaving residents without travel options. And when power was partially restored, travel was slow and fewer trains, particularly on New Jersey Transit lines, operated. Within days, however, rail service was back to normal, with passengers being whisked across the Northeast on assorted subways and commuter trains.

Amtrak Posts Strong Gains in July

August 16, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON – Amtrak reported carrying 2,223,358 passengers in July, making it the best month for ridership in the railroad’s 32-year history. The record-setting month comes on the heels of Amtrak’s strongest April, May and June ridership totals ever. The railroad carried 2,098,901 passengers in April, 2,104,916 passengers in May, and 2,129,697 passengers in June. “Slowly but surely we are making improvements, and we are beginning to see results,” Amtrak president David L. Gunn said. “With public support to bring our infrastructure, trains and stations to a state of good repair, Amtrak will continue to build on this success.” Fifteen Amtrak

Amtrak No. 40: Time for a Paintjob?

July 1, 2003 Todd DeFeo 0

ATLANTA — On a recent jaunt to Washington, D.C., on Amtrak’s Crescent, I noticed something on the train’s lead Genesis unit. It needs a paint job. I’m not sure why it struck me. Perhaps, it was the most detailed examination of a Genesis unit I had ever given. So, on my way down the stairs leading to the plat- form, I snapped a picture and captured the moment on film. In the scheme of railfanning, it’s not an Earth shattering development. But, nonetheless, I found the picture compelling and be worthy of publication here. The picture isn’t typical of what

Fatalities Reported in Train Derailment

June 1, 2003 The Cross-Tie 0

HINESVILLE, Ga. — Two people were killed following a May 8 grade crossing wreck here. Amtrak’s southbound Silver Star struck a lumber truck at 7:20 a.m. May 6 and derailed, officials said. The truck’s driver — Boyd James Van Horn of Richmond Hill, Ga. — was fatally injured in the crash. “It felt like a really hard bump,” passenger Darren Hinzman told The Associated Press. “Then I felt a crash. Chairs were falling forward, objects were falling.” The train’s engineer — Larry Wayne Edenfield of Macclenny, Fla. — died May 9 from injuries he sustained in the wreck. He was

Amtrak Gets Most of Requested Funding

March 10, 2003 The Cross-Tie 0

WASHINGTON – Congress on Feb. 13 passed legislation granting Amtrak a $1.05 billion operating and capital grant for the 2003 fiscal year. Additionally, repayment of a June 28, 2002, $100 million from the U.S. DOT loan from has been deferred. “We have no plans to shut down,” Amtrak spokeswoman Karina Van Veen told Gannett News Service. Amtrak’s $1.2 billion request for the fiscal year was predicated upon projected revenue levels and tight controls on spending. Despite the appropriation, Amtrak still believes sustaining operations will be an ongoing challenge. “Though the budget will be extremely tight, this funding level should be

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