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Passenger Trains > Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO


Date: 07/15/11 01:09
Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: GenePoon

In June 2011, the endpoint on-time performance of Amtrak's Wolverine trains between Detroit and Chicago plunged to ZERO. Not one
Wolverine was on time at the end of its journey, all month.

A year earlier, in June 2010, 59% of the Wolverine trains arrived at Chicago or Detroit on time. That's not all that good, but at least that
means MOST of the trains arrived on time.

The reason for the poor June 2011 showing is known here: slower speed limits imposed on the eastern part of the route, due to deteriorated track.
The tracks are owned by Norfolk Southern, which doesn't need fast track for its freight trains. Amtrak could pay the extra money
needed to get track good enough to run passenger trains back up to their former 79mph. But Amtrak isn't opening its wallet.

However, more trains should be on time next month; relief for the poor timekeeping is coming, probably in early August. No, the trains are
not going to be faster. To reflect the lower speeds, the schedule is going to be made slower.

In the longer term, more money is needed and some of it has been pledged. But that will take a while, and it may not be enough.



Date: 07/15/11 04:54
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: cutboy2

Recovery Act money for this route has been secured. But not OBLIGATED. Meaning, not all contracts between FRA, NS, Amtrak signed.



Date: 07/15/11 05:20
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: andersonb109

I live in the Detroit Metro area and this service is no longer an option to Chicago. Driving time is about 4.5 hours in good weather. Why anyone would subject themselves to this is beyond me.



Date: 07/15/11 05:33
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: joemvcnj

We all knew this was coming in November. Why does Amtrak wait until August to publish a realistic schedule several months after the slow order took effect ?



Date: 07/15/11 05:47
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: MDH

andersonb109 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Why anyone would subject themselves to this is beyond me.

And imagine all the general public riders who used to know this as a fairly reliable way to get to/from Chicago in a reasonable time who will join the ranks of "never again" after experiencing what this route has become over the last half year or so. If Amtrak does somehow manage to get its act together and get this route back up to what it was how many passengers will be left to even give it a try after this debacle? I've even driven up to Ann Arbor before for the better schedule time options vs. using the Lateshore or Capitol in Toledo but don't think I'd do that these days...



Date: 07/15/11 06:12
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: ChS7-321

andersonb109 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I live in the Detroit Metro area and this service
> is no longer an option to Chicago. Driving time is
> about 4.5 hours in good weather. Why anyone would
> subject themselves to this is beyond me.


That's still a long-a** time to be in a car though....



Date: 07/15/11 06:21
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: joemvcnj

Depends on you tolerance for highway congestion vs. NS shenanigans in Michigan and west of Porter. The Indiana Tollway and Dan Ryan are no fun either.



Date: 07/15/11 06:45
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: robj

The drive is NOT fun but timing means a lot and can cut potential driving problems. We have been through this before, lot depends on where you are going when you get to Union Station. The problem is if you are taking a commuter train and having people pick you up. So Amtrak is late, later commuter train, then juggle with your ride, ie great if you have someone who has nothing else to do. The next thing is how many people are traveling and how many Amtrak, commuter tickets you have to buy.

If I had business downtown and had a car, I'd drive to South Bend and take the South Shore, end of problem.

Bob



Date: 07/15/11 08:28
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: Weisguy

I would rather spend a whole day meandering over the Michigan Line at 30MPH than risk driving on one of the oldest and MOST DANGEROUS freeways in the country. Two years ago, I witnessed a roll-over right behind me in one of the areas with narrow lanes and rough roads. I've tried to avoid I-94 at all costs since then.
Sometimes the saying is true, slow and steady wins the race.



Date: 07/15/11 08:42
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: colehour

I noticed that now one cannot travel from the Hammond/Whiting station to Chicago and connect to the Cardinal/Hoosier State. At least the online reservation program won't permit it. When I checked a few months ago it was possible,but apparently the Wolverines are so late that the connection cannot be guaranteed. It's a moot point because it seems that 850/851 are sold out on the dates I wanted to travel.



Date: 07/15/11 08:44
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: GenePoon

colehour Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> it seems that 850/851 are sold out on the dates I wanted to travel.

Maybe it's all those gourmets who can't wait to try the food in the Hoosier State's new Cafe Car Service!! <G>



Date: 07/15/11 08:48
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: joemvcnj

Rachel Ray is doing her show in the cafe car on 850 next Tuesday.



Date: 07/15/11 09:36
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: sums007

joemvcnj Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Rachel Ray is doing her show in the cafe car on
> 850 next Tuesday.

Could you explain what Rachel is going to do?



Date: 07/15/11 09:46
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: joemvcnj

Hot dog stew from microwaved soup cup, hot dog, and ketchup packets from the counter, prepared with plastic cutlery.



Date: 07/15/11 10:21
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: sums007

joemvcnj Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hot dog stew from microwaved soup cup, hot dog,
> and ketchup packets from the counter, prepared
> with plastic cutlery.

I'll bet she dances, too.



Date: 07/15/11 11:46
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: robj

I hate 94 there but I think I on firm ground saying the most dangerous part of a car trip would be the regular Highway getting to the Interstate(or train station).

Bob



Date: 07/15/11 12:55
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: chakk

ChS7-321 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> andersonb109 Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I live in the Detroit Metro area and this
> service
> > is no longer an option to Chicago. Driving time
> is
> > about 4.5 hours in good weather. Why anyone
> would
> > subject themselves to this is beyond me.
>
>
> That's still a long-a** time to be in a car
> though....


Sounds like you've led a sheltered life. Ten hour days in a car between Calif and Colo are S.O.P. for me.
And 5-hour nonstop drives between N. Calif and S. Calif are common, too.



Date: 07/15/11 19:50
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: RuleG

chakk Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> ChS7-321 Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > andersonb109 Wrote:
> >
> --------------------------------------------------
>
> > -----
> > > I live in the Detroit Metro area and this
> > service
> > > is no longer an option to Chicago. Driving
> time
> > is
> > > about 4.5 hours in good weather. Why anyone
> > would
> > > subject themselves to this is beyond me.
> >
> >
> > That's still a long-a** time to be in a car
> > though....
>
>
> Sounds like you've led a sheltered life. Ten
> hour days in a car between Calif and Colo are
> S.O.P. for me.
> And 5-hour nonstop drives between N. Calif and S.
> Calif are common, too.

I driven through and to Michigan three or four times and didn't find it a desireable experience. On the other hand, I've really enjoyed my drives to and through Narrow Guage country as well as drives in and around North Central Pennsylvania.



Date: 07/16/11 06:39
Re: Wolverines June On Time Performance: ZERO
Author: Narr8rdanny

4 and a Half hours is cake on a good interstate like 75 or 10.

Plus I've got my car at either end. Would I love to take Amtrak on my railfanning trips from Tampa to Folkston? You bet, but the convenience is just not there.

This argument, "I'd rather spend 8 hours on a hot, sweaty Amtrak ride than drive 4 hours anywhere" is valid only for we railfans.
The whole idea for the general public is nonsense.

Who wants to put up with a 6-plus hour trainride plus ground connection time rather than just drive it in a third of that or , God Forbid, fly it?

It's comparable to Outback saying "Yes we have your favorite steak, but it's going to take an hour to cook it and another 20 minutes to serve it and the steak might be just be a little cold by then."

It's possible Outback fans would tolerate this, but doubtful the general dining public would. Unfortunately, it's that pesky, latter group you have to cater to.

These are the places Amtrak has to do some optimizing.

Regards,
Danny Harmon
Tampa

PS: Is this the same Wolverine that Steely Dan sang about in "My Old School"?






ChS7-321 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> andersonb109 Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I live in the Detroit Metro area and this
> service
> > is no longer an option to Chicago. Driving time
> is
> > about 4.5 hours in good weather. Why anyone
> would
> > subject themselves to this is beyond me.
>
>
> That's still a long-a** time to be in a car
> though....



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