Empire Service (New York State)

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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby SouthernRailway » Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:04 pm

DutchRailnut wrote:Amtrak has always handled their trains like this, just imagine if people were to board with no check ??
MN commuters would play dumb just to get express ride to Yonkers or Croton .


Anyone without a valid ticket would have to buy one on board; I saw a lady (who had an Amtrak reservation, but no ticket) buy a ticket for cash once on board.

I'm fine with having to show tickets when you board. That's a separate issue from being herded around and screamed at in the heat in order to get you to the car that Amtrak personnel wants you to sit in, and that's what I don't like.
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby DutchRailnut » Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:07 pm

ok try airline no problem only one cabin to get in.
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby SouthernRailway » Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:53 pm

DutchRailnut wrote:ok try airline no problem only one cabin to get in.


Widebody planes can have 2 entrance doors, but I've never been herded like cattle and screamed at, in the heat, about that. Once your boarding pass is checked, you can walk anywhere.

I can try almost any other railroad in North America or Europe and not be herded like cattle and screamed at: I just get on. Sometimes in Europe, cars have signs showing where they're headed, so it's the passenger's job to sit in the right car.

It's so simple for other railroads.
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby johndmuller » Thu Jul 19, 2018 8:44 pm

Is there a good reason up the line to want people to be or not be in certain cars? Like platforms / no platforms, overall station too short, etc?
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby mtuandrew » Sat Jul 21, 2018 12:07 pm

johndmuller wrote:Is there a good reason up the line to want people to be or not be in certain cars? Like platforms / no platforms, overall station too short, etc?

Those reasons, but primarily to make sure there is capacity for large crowds (particularly group travelers) up the line, and to keep conductors from having to open & guard a whole bunch of doors instead of one or two. Reserved seating should help with much of that nonsense.
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby Railjunkie » Sat Jul 21, 2018 2:15 pm

johndmuller wrote:Is there a good reason up the line to want people to be or not be in certain cars? Like platforms / no platforms, overall station too short, etc?


Its much easier to put certain stations in certain cars as there will be less chance of someone being carried by there stop. Depending on the train station stop (some have one door spots) and time of day if this were to happen there may be no way to get you back except either a cab ride or in some cases the following morning.

A couple of examples. Passenger, Im going to xxx. Conductor, yes sir third car please. Passenger I dont want to sit in that car its too crowded, Im going to sit in the first car. I KNOW where I am. Conductor, OK but please understand I opening toward the rear at your stop. Passenger Ya what ever I ride all the time I KNOW WHERE I AM. Guess he didnt cause he missed his stop.

Next stop will be XXX please exit towards center of train where you see a uniformed member of the crew. Once again failure to follow directions.Walked to the first door they came to. No crew member, so instead of going back another car they stood there waiting. They had sat on the long distance side of the train. Daughters opinion, they were traveling to NY whats the difference. Well an extra hour to get back to where they wanted to be.
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:48 am

SouthernRailway wrote:Sometimes in Europe, cars have signs showing where they're headed, so it's the passenger's job to sit in the right car.

Isn't it amazing how overseas they expect, and get, a bit more responsibility from the passengers? Starting with walking up or out to the platforms without any kind of check, it's your responsibility to check the loading diagrams and be sure you are in the correct car for both Class and destination.

I must confess, last August '17, I got "put off" half way between Munich and Salzburg by a German Conductrix that central casting sent over to play a part in a Nazi era film. She knew about as much English as I know German, but with the help of a "terp", I only had a ticket good for a "regional" (Meridian), and I was on a Euro City. "It’s just a train going to Salzburg and I'm in Second Class" was to no avail, so when it got to Rosenheim, there was Brunhilde to put, might say push, me off.

Oh well, there was nice train viewing and some nice English speaking girls to talk with - and keep me company on the rest of the trip to Salzburg, where they were off to go camping (be assured their idea of camping and mine - Camp IHG - were two different things).
Last edited by John_Perkowski on Sun Jul 29, 2018 5:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Off topic material
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby ExCon90 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 2:28 pm

On the other hand, rail travel is part of Europeans' daily life, while plenty of Americans reach middle age without ever having been on a train. Signage and announcements would have to be more detailed over here. I know there are passenger-rail employees on this site -- it might be interesting to hear of any you-can't-make-this-stuff-up type incidents they have experienced*. (None of the above is intended to excuse impolite and inconsiderate behavior when announcements are necessary, however.)

* In Philadelphia during the Bicentennial there was a tourist-oriented bus route established to serve the points most often in demand. So many complaints were received that buses were not waiting for people to get off that SEPTA investigated. It turned out that the complainants had not been on a bus since getting their driver's license in high school and, having been brought up on school-bus rules, thought they had to remain in their seats until the bus came to a stop and the driver opened the door. Seeing no one standing waiting to get off, the driver would close the door and leave. In California the Coaster commuter operation encountered many first-time train riders who were so challenged by the ticket-vending machines that attendants had to be present at the stations to assist them.
Last edited by ExCon90 on Thu Jul 26, 2018 2:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby JimBoylan » Thu Jul 26, 2018 4:22 pm

ExCon90 wrote:So many complaints were received that buses were not waiting for people to get off that SEPTA investigated. It turned out that the complainants had not been on a bus since getting their driver's license in high school and, having been brought up on school-bus rules, thought they had to remain in their seats until the bus came to a stop and the driver opened the door. Seeing no one standing waiting to get off, the driver would close the door and leave
Same problem on the railroad trains. SEPTA's rules say to stay seated until the train comes to a stop, and don't be in the vestibules while the train is moving. But, if no one gets up, the crew won't signal the engineer to stop!
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Re: Empire Service this summer

Postby John_Perkowski » Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:55 pm

Please stay on topic going forward. Reopened.
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Re: Amtrak Empire Service (NYS) Improvements Albany - Buffal

Postby gokeefe » Sun Aug 05, 2018 5:20 pm

New connecting Thruway service provided by Trailways of New York announced:

HURLEY, N.Y., Aug. 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Amtrak customers now have a new option to reach destinations across New York State not accessible by rail, and Trailways of New York customers have gained access to destinations throughout the continent. Beginning today, customers are now able to enjoy connecting service at Amtrak stations in Rochester, NY, Syracuse, NY, Utica, NY, and Saratoga Springs, NY, allowing passengers to continue on to cities such as Cooperstown, Ithaca, Cortland, Glens Falls, Oneonta, and Lake George.
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Re: Amtrak Empire Service (NYS) Improvements Albany - Buffal

Postby Greg Moore » Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:02 pm

Hmm missed this in the news. Nice.
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Re: Amtrak Empire Service (NYS) Improvements Albany - Buffal

Postby Albany Rider » Sun Aug 05, 2018 7:15 pm

Interesting new connections. At one time, NYSDOT hired a consultant to study expansion of bus service to Amtrak stations. Unfortunately, nothing came of that effort. This seems to be formal coordination of existing Amtrak service with existing Trailways service. The western Amtrak stations see 8 trains a day and Saratoga sees 4 trains a day. Hope both Amtrak & Trailways can maintain the coordination.
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Re: Amtrak Empire Service (NYS) Improvements Albany - Buffal

Postby gokeefe » Mon Aug 06, 2018 2:54 pm

It very much is in the sense that these are "Thruway" connections that are ticketed with rail and make the bus stops part of Amtrak's national network. Buses will typically wait for delayed trains in order to ensure the connections are made.

Although Thruway service is not often discussed much here these are very significant network extensions for Amtrak as they provide vital ridership and market development information.

Thruway routes are used in some cases as "test" vehicles to prove the viability of later rail extensions. Such was the case recently with Roanoke, VA where sold out Thruway bus service provided strong evidence of market demand for expanded rail service.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Jeff Smith » Sun Dec 02, 2018 10:04 am

Going to,fold in a few threads, but in the meanwhile, here’s this from the Empire State Passengers Association FB page:

"Amtrak back on track after challenging week" -- ALBANY TIMES UNION & WASHINGTON POST

It was a tough week for Amtrak across upstate New York, with track congestion, weather and mechanical issues all contributing to delays and cancellations. Many of the delays occurred west of Utica but affected the Capital Region.

Locomotive mechanical issues on Wednesday forced the cancellation of the Adirondack in both directions between Albany and Montreal, as well as another train from Niagara Falls to New York City. A replacement train operated from Albany to New York City.

There were some other cancellations as well. This, just a few days after two cars of the southbound Adirondack detached from the rest of the train between Rensselaer and Hudson.

No one was injured in the incident and Amtrak officials said the train’s safety systems worked as designed, immediately stopping both sections of the train. The separation occurred between the first and second passenger cars on the railroad’s Adirondack service, said Jason Abrams, an Amtrak spokesman. “Separation of train cars is rare, and we are actively investigating this incident,” he said.

Abrams said the two cars involved in last Wednesday’s incident have been taken to a maintenance facility for further inspection. The locomotive’s event data recorder has also been downloaded, and the information retrieved shows the train was operating within the authorized speed.

He said there was one locomotive and six passenger cars on the route, which travels from Montreal to New York City. The incident happened around 7:22 p.m., 17 miles south of Albany. Passengers were moved to another train to continue with their trip.

The incident wasn’t the only issue that Amtrak travelers faced during the busy Thanksgiving travel holiday. On Sunday, passengers on a Boston-bound train were stuck for more than five hours after their Acela train lost power shortly after leaving New York’s Penn Station around 9:40 a.m.

Amtrak officials tried to compensate by offering the passengers food and free nonalcoholic beverages, but some on the train said as the hours wore on, the train became stuffy and the toilets stopped working. Crew members opened doors to let in fresh air. Abrams said Amtrak officials are contacting passengers to offer compensation.

Things were back to normal by Friday in Upstate NY.
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