May 20, 2013
MTA Metro-North Railroad Foresees Full Service Wednesday Morning
Train – Bus – Train Operation Will Continue Tuesday
Reconstruction of track infrastructure damaged in a derailment last Friday has progressed to such a degree that Metro-North announced plans today to resume regular train service on the New Haven Line in time for the AM Peak on Wednesday.
About 100 workers are on the job, which has been ongoing around the clock since Saturday night when the National Transportation Safety Board completed its initial investigation of the scene and allowed Metro-North to begin removing the two, 8-car trains.
“We are confident that the reconstruction work, inspection and testing will be completed in time for a normal rush hour on Wednesday,” said Metro-North President Howard Permut. “We are grateful for the tireless work of all departments and employees engaged in this huge task.”
The shuttle train operation from New Haven to Bridgeport, with a bus connection to Stamford, where customers can board a train for New York, will continue on Tuesday.
The bus operation went according to plan on Monday with 120 buses on hand and no crowding reported.
“The local municipalities offered tremendous support, with signs, special lanes, satellite parking and police assistance and Metro-North is grateful for this very high level of cooperation, which ensured the operation’s success,” said Susan Doering, Metro-North’s Vice President of Customers Service and Stations.
About 750 people rode the shuttle trains and boarded buses at Bridgeport to Stamford, just 20% of the 4,000 people who ordinarily board trains at New Haven, Milford and Stratford during the AM peak. However, overall AM Peak ridership on the entire New Haven Line was down just 20%, which means, many people drove to other stations to catch a train. And a 6% increase in ridership was counted on the Harlem Line.
In all, the buses, including the local, intermediate route, carried about 1,200 in the AM peak, and another 1,500 people between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.
In Bridgeport, work to rebuild two sections of track totaling 2,000 feet continues at a brisk pace. The track itself, including the stone, ties, rail and fasteners, is the first order of business and that job is complete on one of the two sections. Next comes restringing the overhead catenary wire and appropriate connections to the substations. The signal system is the final component followed by vigorous inspection and a period of operating test trains over the rail. This critical work will continue overnight.