Amtrak working to restore Louisiana, Mississippi service

WASHINGTON -- Amtrak said it was still conducting a damage assessment to determine when it could reestablish passenger service to parts of Louisiana and Mississippi, which were heavily impacted by Hurricane Katrina two weeks ago.

Rail lines and facilities are pretty badly beaten up, but the freights and Amtrak are working hard to restore service, said Amtrak President and CEO David Gunn in a statement. Amtrak provides service to many communities over rail lines owned and maintained by the freight railroads.

Amtrak is doing a damage assessment of our facilities and well start repairs very soon, Gunn said. We want to resume our operations as quickly as feasible in New Orleans and other communities in Louisiana and Mississippi that Amtrak serves.

In the meantime, Amtrak said:

  • The City of New Orleans (trains 58 & 59), which normally provides daily service between New Orleans and Chicago, is instead operating between Jackson, Miss., and Chicago. Starting with the southbound departure on Sept. 12 and the northbound departure on Sept. 13, the trains southern terminus will be extended to Hammond, La.

  • The Crescent (trains 19 & 20) -- which normally operates daily service between New Orleans and New York -- is operating between Atlanta and New York. Starting with the southbound departure on Sept. 12 and the northbound departure on Sept. 14, the trains southern terminus will be extended to Meridian, Miss.

  • The Sunset Limited (trains 1 & 2), normally traveling between Los Angeles and Orlando, through New Orleans on a three-day-per-week schedule, now operates between Los Angeles and San Antonio. Amtrak said there are currently no plans presently to extend the trains eastern terminus or to initiate service east of New Orleans.
  • To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Michael Milligan at [email protected].

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