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Rail News: Amtrak

Amtrak asks STB to investigate delays on CN line


Amtrak has filed a complaint with the Surface Transportation Board (STB) requesting that the agency investigate CN for "causing unacceptable train delays" on the Illini/Saluki service that uses the Class I's line from Chicago to Carbondale, Ill.

Amtrak alleges the on-time performance (OTP) of the Illini/Saluki service was 49 percent for the quarter that ended June 30 and 42 percent for the prior quarter, according to an Amtrak press release. The railroad filed its complaint with the STB on Aug. 29.

Under the Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act, the STB must investigate if the OTP of an intercity passenger train falls below 80 percent for two consecutive quarters, Amtrak officials said.

Amtrak's complaint is part of the same case that the railroad filed with the STB regarding CN's performance in January 2012. The proceedings were stayed while the two railroads attempted to work out the delay issues informally, but the OTP has "remained poor" on the Illini/Saluki service, Amtrak officials said.

If the STB finds Amtrak's right to preference are found, the national intercity passenger railroad is asking the federal agency to award damages and other relief.

CN will respond to Amtrak's investigation request to the STB, and has "no further comment at this time," a CN spokesman said this morning in an email.


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