Monday, June 17, 2024

Amtrak services between NYC, DC, Philadelphia return to normal after severe disruption

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Amtrak service between New York, Washington D.C. and Philadelphia has resumed to normal after downed overhead powerlines between Newark, New Jersey and New York’s Penn Station disrupted train services between Wednesday evening and Thursday afternoon, an Amtrak spokesperson said.

“Full scheduled service resumed earlier this morning,” Jason Abrams, an Amtrak spokesperson said in an email to USA TODAY Thursday afternoon.

Amtrak and NJ Transit services were impacted shortly after 5 p.m. Wednesday due to downed wires just outside of Newark near Kearny, the location of the Portal Bridge and the construction of its replacement, NorthJersey.com, part of the USA TODAY Network reported. However, the wire issues had nothing to do with the bridge or the construction, Amtrak said.

“A signal wire came into contact with the catenary, causing a blowout,” Abrams told USA TODAY. “The signal line from the catenary wire fell to the ground.”

An investigation into how the two wires came into contact is ongoing, Abrams said.

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The power issue caused multiple Amtrak trains between New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. to be suspended Wednesday and while services resumed early Thursday, travelers were warned to “expect extensive residual delays due to speed restrictions and rail congestion.” Trains were delayed up to two hours Thursday, according to Amtrak alerts.

“Customers with reservations on trains that are being modified will typically be accommodated on trains with similar departure times or another day,” Amtrak had said in its advisory.

Amtrak said it was waiving fees for changing reservations on affected lines and customers should reach out to contact its reservation center at 1-800-USA-RAIL.

NJ Transit also affected

The wire mishap also affected NJ Transit that connects Manhattan with multiple cities in New Jersey.

The commuter service, in an update shortly after 1:30 p.m. Thursday, alerted passengers to expect up to 30-minute delays on multiple routes due to Amtrak’s overhead wire issues.

NJ Transit also requested customers to refer to their travel advisory while making plans.

Saman Shafiq is a trending news reporter for USA TODAY. Reach her at sshafiq@gannett.com and follow her on X @saman_shafiq7.

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