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30,000 Metro-North Commuters Wish They Could Telework This Week

Two Amtrak trains collided this weekend after a derailment in western Connecticut, injuring 72 people and destroying almost half a mile of track. Now the focus is on commuters on the affected Metro North line—all 30,000 of them—who won’t be able to take the train into work this week. The AP reports on the delays riders are facing:

“Residents should plan for a week’s worth of disruptions,” Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said Sunday at a news conference in Hartford….

David Cox, a 52-year-old human resources manager from Waterbury, said his bus ride from Bridgeport to Stamford took 1 1/2 hours, making his entire trip about 3 1/2 hours, an hour longer than normal.

Our sympathies go out to those injured in Friday’s accident, but also to those commuting along the affected corridor. Many of those who normally take the train into work have switched to cars or on buses, adding to congestion and making commuting—already a stressful, unhealthy process—even longer.

Fortunately, with 21st century technology, commuting is no longer an inevitable part of everyone’s daily lives. We sing the praises of telework often on this blog, and disasters like these make it clear why this trend is so important. Rather than waste hours a day on crowded buses and trains, employees at telework-friendly offices can work through the delays from home. Those not so lucky have no choice but to soldier through the dreaded rush hour.

[Derailed train photo courtesy of Getty Images]

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  • Tucker Goodrich

    Most of them are. Volume is down ~80% on MetroNorth, but they didn’t all taking to the highways, where volume was similar to normal, based on my commute this morning.

    “The governor said in the conference call that train usage is down 81% today, although traffic patterns remain normal.”

  • dmoelling

    As a hard pressed CT taxpayer, anything we can do to reduce my subsidy of finance guys commuting to Manhattan is good. Sorry but my gas tax pays for I95 and shouldn’t be diverted to railroads that are run better privately (There are many new branch line companies forming now).

    The Amtrak service is beaten by new buslines (Megabus and Bolt) on price and astonishingly speed.

  • skhpcola

    These NE liberals kvetch about subsidies continually, but 30,000 of them (in this story only) are on transportation welfare from the rest of us. Amtrak is a leech and a sop to elitist leftists. Shut it down, or charge a fare that covers the actual price of the ride.

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