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Alaska Railroad restores service after earthquake

A 7.0-magnitude earthquake that struck Nov. 30 interrupted ARRC's services.
Photo – Alaska Railroad Facebook account

The Alaska Railroad Corp. (ARRC) yesterday restored all regularly scheduled freight and passenger services that were interrupted by the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that struck south-central Alaska Nov. 30.

The railroad suspended its regularly scheduled services to assess damage along its nearly 500 miles of track and enable crews to quickly make needed repairs, ARRC officials said in a press release. Following the earthquake, there were a number of areas that sustained damage, with some track sections deemed impassable.

A coordinated effort among work teams helped ensure tracks, bridges, facilities and railroad systems were again safe for service, ARRC officials said. On Monday evening, the first trains covered the entire length of the tracks from Anchorage to Fairbanks.

"We could not be more pleased with the work our crews have done to get the Alaska Railroad back up and running in just over 72 hours," said Dale Wade, ARRC’s vice president of marketing and customer service. "This incredible effort from railroaders speaks to the grit and perseverance of Alaska and its people.”

The first post-earthquake passenger train — the Winter Hurricane Turn Train — will operate tomorrow, followed by regularly scheduled Aurora Winter Trains this weekend. Holiday trains also will resume service this weekend.

ARRC’s ticket office now is open to help passengers with questions, or to rebook or refund tickets for trips that were canceled while trains remained out of service.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 12/5/2018