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Potential Rail Strike & Metra service (+ other commuter railroads)


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Short answer is YES most likely IF there is a strike.  METROLINK in LA already came out saying they will be impacted.  Roll the dice, this is something the Biden admin and Sec  Pete DONT WANT ON THEIR WATCH awith economic impacts of up to $2B  a day.   Im sure the MEGAs are cheering for a strike.   if it does happen might be short.  Who knows what will actually happen, go take a poll.    Metra is being very quiet.  

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22 minutes ago, dailycommuter62 said:

https://metra.com/newsroom/message-customers

Basically the UP and BNSF lines will shut down, RI and MED will continue, and the others seem to be up to whether the host roads continue having dispatchers on duty in the meantime

I guess the question is whether the dispatchers are Union or management?  If they are union, then that might shut down the other lines.  If they are management,  then the other lines should continue to run.  To my knowledge,  BNSF and Union Pacific Metra Lunes are the only commuter lines in the country operated by the freight railroads..

I wonder if Metra wishes it had an agreement in place with UP to take over the operations of those lines?   

This also might impact Amtrak, except in the Northeast Corridor with the Acela service.  This could be a temporary boost to the trucking industry as well  

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1 hour ago, Railguy said:

Amtrak is supending service on most western network trains as of today. More to follow.    Metrolink mighy have some lines ran by BNSF.  Sound transit and former MSP Northline also tan by  BNSF

I think MSP Northstar line runs on BNSF trackage,and is dispatched by BNSF, but I don't think BNSF operates that service.

The fact that Amtrak is suspending its western network leads me to believe that maybe the dispatchers at these railroads are probably unionized. While I don't know this to be fact, even if they are management,  there wouldn't be enough passenger train service to justify staffing dispatchers.   Asd to that the fact there would be no one to maintain tracks which would be a safety issue.   

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I looked at the NICTD website but didn't see anything related to the strike.  It's likely they will operate normally.  

Hopefully Metra can work out something to operate the other lines.  UPN riders would have the option of the MDN and Purple Line.  

Somehow I don't think CN will let Metra operate NCS or HC.

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29 minutes ago, artthouwill said:

I looked at the NICTD website but didn't see anything related to the strike.  It's likely they will operate normally.  

Hopefully Metra can work out something to operate the other lines.  UPN riders would have the option of the MDN and Purple Line.  

Somehow I don't think CN will let Metra operate NCS or HC.

I’d be surprised if anything other than the MED & RID operate, outside of maybe the MDN.

Here on the east coast, MARC has already said their the Camden & Brunswick lines (dispatched by CSX) might not operate (Penn line is dispatched, operated and run on Amtrak-owned lines) and VRE has said the same (one line CSX, one line NS). The VRE one is especially bad, since Metro just instituted a shutdown and many people were switching to it as an alternative.

I think the only commuter railroads that will suffer 0 effects at all are CalTrain, SEPTA, MNRR & LIRR

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1 hour ago, NewFlyerMCI said:

I’d be surprised if anything other than the MED & RID operate, outside of maybe the MDN.

Here on the east coast, MARC has already said their the Camden & Brunswick lines (dispatched by CSX) might not operate (Penn line is dispatched, operated and run on Amtrak-owned lines) and VRE has said the same (one line CSX, one line NS). The VRE one is especially bad, since Metro just instituted a shutdown and many people were switching to it as an alternative.

I think the only commuter railroads that will suffer 0 effects at all are CalTrain, SEPTA, MNRR & LIRR

Maybe add PATH?

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5 minutes ago, MetroShadow said:

Heavy Rail. Wouldn't really apply in this case. What about the MBTA and CT lines (not necessarily dealt with MNRR)

I think PATH operates out of Penn Station and is separate from MTA operations.  I also think PATH shares trackage with Amtrak for Boston bound trains which makes it a commuter rail service.

While we are at it, I think we can add NJT to the list.   The common thing here is that these are electric commuter railroads 

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On 9/13/2022 at 3:48 PM, artthouwill said:

The common thing here is that these are electric commuter railroads 

Which doesn't make any difference, since all railroads around there are electric. The question is whether PATH is analogous to the subway. Also, PATH is not the MTA/New Haven.

[I deleted other point]

 

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Wanted to create an official topic for any further discussion.

Current updates can be found here: https://metra.com/newsroom/updated-message-customers-sept-14

Summary:

Lines that will operate: MED, RID, SWS, MDN, MDW

Tentative: HC, NCS

No service: UPN, UPNW, UPW, BNSF

This is all if an agreement is not reached. For the lines with no service, that will happen after evening peak on Thursday (presumably so equipment won't be stranded)

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14 minutes ago, NewFlyerMCI said:

Wanted to create an official topic for any further discussion.

Current updates can be found here: https://metra.com/newsroom/updated-message-customers-sept-14

Summary:

Lines that will operate: MED, RID, SWS, MDN, MDW

Tentative: HC, NCS

No service: UPN, UPNW, UPW, BNSF

This is all if an agreement is not reached. For the lines with no service, that will happen after evening peak on Thursday (presumably so equipment won't be stranded)

That's some good news    it seems like Metra is confident it will be able to run HC and NCS.  Knowing that CN owns those tracks doesn't make me confident that they will allow Metra trains to operate. 

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This doesn't bode well. Also leads me to think that while the NCS is still in the air, the HC will probably definitely be cancelled. I'm surprised Metra didn't outright cancel them already, those are the two lines with the most ridership and it's easier than other lines to find alternatives. I imagine a bustitution of the HC wouldn't even be that hard, comparatively speaking

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2 hours ago, Railguy said:

Where you going to find buses well actually drivers.   Pace and all privates have shortage of operators

Right. The 213 runs along UP-N between Highland Park and Howard Red Purple Yellow Station. I was going to see if they're gonna have extra buses to go to Davis Purple Line to help UP-N passengers to get to the Loop? UP-W got 309 Lake Street between Elmhurst and Austin/Lake Green. UP-NW got 209 from Des Plaines  Metra and Harlem Blue Line O'Hare. I guess Metra will have to figure it out what to do with the customers that are further out. Some of the BNSF customers probably will have to catch 755/850/851/855 in the Plainfield, Bolingbrook, Romeoville, Burr Ridge bus centers to get to the Loop. I guess Metra and Pace will figure something out.

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27 minutes ago, renardo870 said:

Right. The 213 runs along UP-N between Highland Park and Howard Red Purple Yellow Station. I was going to see if they're gonna have extra buses to go to Davis Purple Line to help UP-N passengers to get to the Loop? UP-W got 309 Lake Street between Elmhurst and Austin/Lake Green. UP-NW got 209 from Des Plaines  Metra and Harlem Blue Line O'Hare. I guess Metra will have to figure it out what to do with the customers that are further out. Some of the BNSF customers probably will have to catch 755/850/851/855 in the Plainfield, Bolingbrook, Romeoville, Burr Ridge bus centers to get to the Loop. I guess Metra and Pace will figure something out.

There's no way riders from the outer burbs will take parallel Pace routes to the Blue or Green Line.   Wilmette and Evanston riders might hop the Purple Line  abd River Forest and Iak Park riders will hop on the Green Line,  but outside of that,  I think riders will either work from home or drive. 

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4 hours ago, renardo870 said:

Right. The 213 runs along UP-N between Highland Park and Howard Red Purple Yellow Station. I was going to see if they're gonna have extra buses to go to Davis Purple Line to help UP-N passengers to get to the Loop? UP-W got 309 Lake Street between Elmhurst and Austin/Lake Green. UP-NW got 209 from Des Plaines  Metra and Harlem Blue Line O'Hare. I guess Metra will have to figure it out what to do with the customers that are further out. Some of the BNSF customers probably will have to catch 755/850/851/855 in the Plainfield, Bolingbrook, Romeoville, Burr Ridge bus centers to get to the Loop. I guess Metra and Pace will figure something out.

The express buses might be viable options. The local routes, doubtful (but not impossible).

But with service delivery on the CTA side? That might be problematic.

Theres always vanpools if you're uncertain, but the turnaround time to get a new one started is six weeks. Outside of the VA hospital (UP-N) and anything out of Indiana, very few parallel the afflicted metra lines.

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