Effect of early January 2022 Virginia Snowstorm on Amtrak

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SarahZ

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Emergency Supplies Maybe. Nothing to fancy but a warm blanket, some candy bars, and don’t let the tank get below 1/2.

I been stuck in blizzard before, basic supplies will make it a pain in the butt, not a emergency.
This is exactly it. I keep protein bars, sugar-free Gatorade, and water rolled up in a winter-rated sleeping bag and then wrap a blanket around the sleeping bag. I also have a shovel and a small container of salt that works in frigid temps.

And if you run out of water, you can always grab some snow. :)
 

Manny T

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I would think there is a basic difference between being stranded in your car on a highway during a weather emergency and being stranded on an Amtrak train during the same emergency. In your car, you're on your own and you're responsible for yourself and your companions. Maybe you're prepared, maybe you're not, c'est la vie. On an Amtrak train, you have the alleged support of a trained crew and you rely on the professionals behind them -- experts in weather, planning, logistics, procurement, and communications, who have direct lines to contact local officials. Hence the problem can't be just "the crew timed out" -- what about all the support behind them that is supposed to plan for that and remedy the problems?
 
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AM_ROAD

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What happens if a train is delayed due to weather conditions like this and the crew have timed out?
 

tgstubbs1

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What happens if a train is delayed due to weather conditions like this and the crew have timed out?
I wonder if that was part of the problem?

They left ATL around 2AM so the crew would have expired sometime that morning.
 

jis

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I wonder if that was part of the problem?

They left ATL around 2AM so the crew would have expired sometime that morning.
I think crew timing out and being out of position is the bigger problem in this specific case. Of course the folk sat Daily Mail are unlikely to have deeper knowledge of railway operations in the US in the context of sparse network operated by Amtrak.

Although,I think it may also be true that the COVID situation did not make recovery from the borked up situation any easier, and possibly made it considerably harder.
 
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jis

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Incidents and accidents do not need to happen but they still do unfortunately. Human fallibility is often involved whether it be by one of the grunts or the managers or systemic based on current philosophy of operations, however, they arrived at it.

I think one of the core problems is that we strive for efficiency in operation (who can argue against that, right? ;) ) which among other thing involves cutting down staff. Unfortunately that very act makes the system more fragile. And then when things go wrong they go really wrong and it is much harder to recover. We are seeing one of those instances in Virginia.

Of course the derailment near Baltimore yesterday made things even worse than they would have been otherwise.
 
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jis

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It is interesting to see how much more attention is being paid to the Crescent situation, while there is neary a mention of the Roanoke Regional, which normally runs just ahead of the Crescent from Lynchburg, which managed to get towed back into Lynchburg, and was canceled there sending the consist back to Roanoke to become the next day's 176. Presumably its passengers were accommodated on the Cresceht. Its passengers were stuck there for just about as long as the Crescent. Of course the passengers on it did not exactly have the 24 hours of journey already under their belt (for those coming all the way from NOL). But still...
 
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jis

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Derailment near Baltimore? First time I heard of that.
It was something minor and as I understand it, not a passenger train. But still they were down to single track operation for a while around the area of the derailment. Read about it on another board. But it was way minor compared to the big mess already unfolding. Some of the pure NEC (i.e. trains not going South of Washington DC) cancellation were caused by that apparently. Amtrak had put up a separate notification about those trains without stating any cause AFAIR.
 

Zack

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I see most of the Silver Service was canceled entirely today. I have a trip on 98 on Friday to WAS. Hoping it doesn't get canceled.
 

stx

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If this was mentioned in the thread I missed it, but Lynchburg city reps brought doughnuts, water bottles and boredom-relieving activities (from Lynchburg tourism marketing supplies) to the passengers. Passengers were free to leave the train to go into the station, wander around, etc., and presumably could use the phones there. As for the woman complaining that Amtrak wouldn't tell her where she could meet her mother, from 8 hours away? I can't imagine the rep on the phone or even the engineer would be able to predict when fallen trees/power lines would be removed from the track and where the train's eventual progress would overlap with someone driving along an interstate that might still be shut down. Some people would rather complain than make the best of an unexpected inconvenience.
 
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