Amtrak passengers free after being stuck for 14 hours - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Amtrak passengers free after being stuck for 14 hours

Posted: Updated:
RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

It was the light at the end of the tunnel for more than 200 Amtrak passengers early Monday, as the Silver Star from New York Penn Station arrived at Staples Mill Station - nearly 14 hours late.

A problem with one of the train's axles caused the train to come to a screeching halt Sunday afternoon, two miles north of Staples Mill.

Passengers were not allowed to leave the train cars, even as Henrico Police officers boarded and exited Amtrak Train 91 during the overnight hours.

According to Amtrak spokesperson Kimberly Woods, arranging shuttle bus transportation was too problematic, and allowing passengers to walk onto the tracks was deemed unsafe.

Amtrak personnel said a train would only be evacuated onto the tracks if a fire or other emergency put passengers' lives in danger. The train never lost power or air conditioning during the nearly 14 hour wait. Bathrooms were operational and passengers could move within the train.

The axle problem developed underneath the dining car, a section that could not be disconnected from the rest of the train. Amtrak Train 91 then moved at a pace of inches per minute, as passengers tracked the slow progress on their cell phones with GPS apps.

"I felt many bumps, them trying to move the train, every like, inch or two," said Meida Jimenez in an interview Monday. "It was horrendous. Horrendous."

The train left New York just after 11 a.m. Sunday, and was due in Richmond six hours later at 5:09 p.m.

Once passengers made it to Staples Mill Station around 6:50 a.m. Monday, many voiced frustration with a lack of updates from Amtrak on board.

"I'm trying to call [Amtrak] now, trying to get a refund," said one traveler continuing on the same train to South Carolina. "They just give us the run-around."

Amtrak replaced the dining car before the Silver Star continued its route to Miami, Fla.

"A delay of this magnitude is considered rare and we understand the passengers frustrations from last night's events," Woods said in an email Monday. "We encourage passengers to call 1-800-USA-RAIL for refund or credit information"

Amtrak is now investigating the incident.

Copyright 2013 WWBT NBC12.  All rights reserved.

  • NewsNewsMore>>

  • SCMPD searching for southside thief

    SCMPD searching for southside thief

    Friday, August 22 2014 6:55 PM EDT2014-08-22 22:55:28 GMT
    Southside Precinct detectives of Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department are searching for the suspect responsible for at least two recent thefts on Savannah's southside.  

    More >>
    Southside Precinct detectives of Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department are searching for the suspect responsible for at least two recent thefts on Savannah's southside.  

    More >>
  • 17-year-old charged in shooting

    17-year-old charged in shooting

    Friday, August 22 2014 6:52 PM EDT2014-08-22 22:52:33 GMT
    Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police have charged a youth arrested in Garden City with the shooting of a Savannah man during a robbery Aug. 3.

    More >>
    Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police have charged a youth arrested in Garden City with the shooting of a Savannah man during a robbery Aug. 3.

    More >>
  • Statesboro, Georgia Southern get ready to 'Paint the Town Blue'

    Statesboro, Georgia Southern get ready to 'Paint the Town Blue'

    Friday, August 22 2014 6:40 PM EDT2014-08-22 22:40:32 GMT
    Georgia Southern football fans in Statesboro have a chance to show their Eagle spirit in the days leading up to the first home game of the 2014 season. The university and the City of Statesboro are teamingMore >>
    The City of Statesboro and Georgia Southern want to spread school spirit for Eagle football.More >>
Powered by WorldNow