Amtrak and PennDOT to restore Pennsylvanian and Keystone Service

Written by David C. Lester, Managing Editor
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Amtrak and PennDOT to restore Pennsylvanian and Keystone Service.
David C. Lester

In coordination with state partners at the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, beginning June 1, Amtrak is fully restoring Pennsylvanian service (New York – Philadelphia – Pittsburgh) frequencies and Keystone Service (New York – Philadelphia – Harrisburg) trains will begin operating again on a modified schedule in response to anticipated increased demand.

Modified Keystone Service will include nine weekday roundtrips and six roundtrips on weekends. Keystone Service will temporarily operate between Philadelphia and Harrisburg only, with no service between New York and Philadelphia. Pennsylvanian service will include one daily roundtrip operating normally between New York, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. All trains will be reserved to allow for physical distancing.

Amtrak is also restoring Acela service on the Northeast Corridor on a modified schedule beginning June 1. Modified service will include the restoration of three weekday Acela roundtrips. Northeast Regional frequencies will also be increased from eight to 10 roundtrips.

Amtrak continues to take extra steps to disinfect stations and trains. Additional measures include the following:

  • Limiting bookings: To help maintain CDC recommendations for physical distancing onboard trains, Amtrak has temporarily reduced Coach, Business, and Acela First Class sales to 50% capacity on reserved services.
  • Facial coverings: As part of Amtrak’s ongoing commitment to protect customers and front-line employees in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Amtrak is requiring that all customers in stations, on trains and thruway buses wear facial coverings. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the use of simple cloth facial coverings or masks to slow the spread of the virus and prevent transmission.
  • Enhanced cleaning: Amtrak has amplified the cleaning of trains by spraying a disinfectant focusing on highly touched surfaces.
  • Cashless transactions: As an added measure to ensure the health and safety of our customers and employees, we are temporarily accepting cashless payments only in stations and on trains.
  • Physical distancing: Signage has been displayed at several of our busiest stations to indicate safe distances in high customer traffic areas such as waiting rooms, in front ticket offices, at the base/top of escalators, lounge entrances, etc. In addition, clear protective barriers have been retrofitted at stations where there are no current glass barriers.
  • Upon arrival: When the train is approaching a destination, conductors will make announcements regarding where and when customers can disembark to minimize crowding at the door.

While some services were temporarily reduced or suspended, Amtrak has and will continue to operate as an essential service as the nation recovers. In addition to Pennsylvanian and Keystone Service trains, other trains in the Amtrak network will be restored to service by monitoring demand, working with state partners and continuing to prioritize customer and employee safety.

An Amtrak press release.

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Categories: Commuter/Regional, High-Speed Rail, Intercity, Passenger, Railroad News
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