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UPDATE: LIRR Service Restored

Residual delays expected as system gets back on track.

Update 7:40 p.m.: The LIRR is resuming regular east and westbound train service to/from Penn Station. Customers should anticipate some delays and cancellations as a result of the earlier service suspension at Penn Station due to Amtrak switching problems.

Update 7 p.m.: Limited eastbound service has been restored at Penn Station. Customers can anticipate hourly service on four branches with trains to Babylon, Huntington, Ronkonkoma and Port Washington. Westbound service to Penn remains suspended. Customers are being provided with free transfers to the E train at Jamaica for service to Penn.

Original Story

The Long Island Rail Road has temporarily suspended service to and from Penn Station due to an Amtrak switching problem.

This issue affects all branches.

According to the MTA website, "Amtrak crews are working to repair the problem. Customers at Penn are advised to take the 2 or 3 subway train to Atlantic Terminal for eastbound LIRR trains."

NYC Transit is cross honoring LIRR tickets at Penn and Jamaica stations. There is currently no access into Penn Station.

LIRR service was last suspended for several days during Hurricane Sandy and again during the nor'easter a week later.

huynhhai November 22, 2012 at 02:24 AM
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paul November 22, 2012 at 03:08 AM
That would be a great idea.... "LIRRPA" No electric... No trains... John you are a super-genius. I love it... ROTFLMAO
christie nicolle November 22, 2012 at 04:04 PM
you couldn't pay me to take LIRR, no thanks, the Jitney + Luxury Liner do just fine.
Thomas November 22, 2012 at 04:12 PM
Don't you think its time the LIRR stops using Amtrak's tunnels and services? Is the LIRR going to blame Amtrak for another 100 years? Instead of building a new tunnel to grand central they should have built their OWN tunnel to Penn Station.
John Russell November 22, 2012 at 04:53 PM
If a real business had a failure like the LIRR constantly has with switches, they would fix the problem and make sure it never happens again or they would go out of business. Why can't the Fail Road fix this problem? It is outrageous that day after day and year after year the customers are constantly subjected to horrendous service from the Fail Road. Also they continually lie about on the performance, if a public company on the stock exchange lied like that their management would be in jail. The politicians are focusing on LIPA now, they should be focusing on LIRR too as LIRR performs poorly almost every day. On the day when most people travel, once again the Fail Road comes through again.
Argile November 22, 2012 at 05:02 PM
You already are paying the LIRR. Check you property tax bill and phone bill. It's called the MTA tax.
Robert Demarco November 22, 2012 at 06:25 PM
Chris, Iwas there last night. They kept announcing that the problem was switches in the AMTRAK tunnel, but it did not make me feel any better.
Robert Demarco November 22, 2012 at 06:29 PM
Once it was apparent last night that service would not resume anytime soon, we decided to exit via the escalator on 34th ST., on the 7th Avenue end. The crowds exiting the escalator could not clear the top fast enough, and the people reaching the top of the escalator had difficulty getting off. Was there no plan to shut the escalators in the event of overcrowding. It looks like they never had to deal with this type of situation, when the reality is that it happens all the time.
Robert Demarco November 22, 2012 at 06:31 PM
This "near normal schedule" that they are running is a ploy to make the commuters think that all is well. They cancel 23 out of 127 evening rush trains, about 20% of the schedule. This is not near normal service. If not for the storm, this would be considered a severe delay. We are being sold a bill of goods, and pretty soon we are going to pay 9% more for the privilege of being abused by the LIRR.
Chris Wendt November 22, 2012 at 06:47 PM
I do not want to be too defensive of the LIRR. However, Amtrak, a federal corporate entity, owns Penn Station and all of the tracks, switches, and signals within and leading to it, including the four East River tunnels used by the LIRR and NJ Transit as well as all the Amtrak trains. Amtrak, not the LIRR and not the MTA are responsible for maintaining and repairing everything mentioned above. I was very fortunate to have heard the news of last nights problem just as I walked in my front door in time for dinner at home. I have not always been so lucky. Complaints about last night should be made to our US Senators' offices, Schumer and Gilibrand. You could include Pete King as well.
John Dillworth November 22, 2012 at 07:26 PM
Tired of that song and dance. Amtrk blamed ConEd. Con Ed said a compressor failed. SO why is there no spare compressor? Why no indication the compressor was going to fail? Why nobody on had to fix the compressor? Ever time there is a problem NJ transit and Amtrak seem to run fine and the LIRR shuts down. Noreaster 2 weeks ago? All the major commuter train systems in the area stayed up....except one. Want to guess which one shut down? Pedestrian on the tracks at Queens Village? Shut down the whole LIRR! Hurricane? 45 % service. Why not more service to Atlantic Terminal? How about 100% to Jamaica and then switch to the Subways? How about a refund on the days the LIRR was not running? Nope, they told me to take them to court. Every time it rains the $95 million dollar switching system at Jamaica crashes in a heap. There is a 4:20 from Penn every week night that is supposed to get to Northrop at 5:30. I defy you to ever, ever witness that train arriving at 5:30. It is always 5-10 minutes late, every night FOR YEARS!!!! When I buy a ticket from the LIRR I expect them to deliver the service I pay for. The are responsible, not Amtrack. This system sucks and the President, Helena Williams has presided over it's decline. Her qualifications to run a railroad? None, none at all.
christie nicolle November 22, 2012 at 09:21 PM
i love Pete King, don't pick on Pete.
Robert Demarco November 23, 2012 at 12:39 AM
Regardless of who is responsible, we pay top dollar for services and receive nothing but delays and excuses, and incompetent and uncaring LIRR employees.
christie nicolle November 23, 2012 at 05:29 AM
you mention correctly about "incompetent employees"... you mean like Obama's inept employees -- Susan Rice, who should be fired for Benghazi? Yes, pray she's fired + she takes along with her Obama. What a travesty to lose a great man like Mitt for this garbage.
Brian November 23, 2012 at 06:22 AM
Always got to go to Obama, right christie? Well, since we're talking about a failure of infrastructure, try comparing Bush and Obama in that area and see who's been a better advocate in that area. If we didn't spend the amount of money we did in Iraq and Afghanistan, we would have the money to invest in a far better LIRR and incidents such as these would occur far less often. Why complain though? At least our militarized police now have enough money to invest in drones to spy on civilians. Thanks Bush.
Dad of Three November 23, 2012 at 07:04 AM
Poor Christie. She feels like millions of Americans did in 2000, and in 2004, only she just can't get over her hatred. Fortunately, Christie, the American people have spoken and even many key Republicans are now admitting what a sorry excuse of a presidential candidate that Mitt Romney was. I hope you feel better soon.
Robert Demarco November 23, 2012 at 01:03 PM
I agree with you, but that has nothing to do with the current topic, which is the LIRR.
Linda Otta November 23, 2012 at 03:03 PM
Mitt was a sorry excuse for a candidate? Obama must really suck then to have run such a close race to such a sorry excuse for a candidate. Clinton will get the nod in 2016 and very likely will we be completely government run and at the mercy of all the trains, planes and automobile industries the government will own or run by then. The food rationing system has already begun.
Robert Demarco November 23, 2012 at 03:06 PM
Other than the fact that the same people (government ) who run LIPA and the LIRR are going to run our healthcare, what does the presidential race have to do with the LIRR delays on Wednesday evening?
justme November 23, 2012 at 09:31 PM
How un-American to call the President of the United States of America "this garbage"! You should be ashamed of yourself christie nicolle!
Giselle Eras November 24, 2012 at 07:37 AM
Are you the same John Coyle who worked for Roger?
Stinker November 24, 2012 at 11:50 AM
Methinks you need an outlet. All work and no play make christie a dull girl. Don't forget Condi Rice served in the same position after claiming wmd were the reason we went to war in Iraq. 10 years ago. Different brand of rice, same lack of intelligence. Pun intended.
A November 26, 2012 at 05:25 AM
Wow. Never seen so many people that need to get a life.
Arguendo November 26, 2012 at 12:52 PM
Go catch a train... if they don't cancel it first.
Robert Demarco November 26, 2012 at 01:03 PM
This "near normal" is a myth. The fact remains that 20% of their trains are cancelled, regardless of the reason. The trains are seriously crowded, and they have frequent delays. Twice in the last two weeks I had to go to Hicksville rather than Wantagh. They just do not know how to manage a crisis. They create dangerous situations in Penn Station because there is no plan.
John Gruber November 26, 2012 at 03:37 PM
there's always people like this...and they're gonna sound really dumb when they're completely wrong
Chris Wendt November 27, 2012 at 01:40 AM
They have a plan. When the signals do not work, trains cannot move. The situation is assessed by Amtrak. Troubleshooting and repair is done by Amtrak. When the terminal approaches its maximum occupancy, no additional people are allowed to enter. When the problem is identified by Amtrak it is corrected by Amtrak and train operations among LIRR, NJ Transit and Amtrak resume. There are empty trains for three railroads staged at the West Side Yard, at the Sunnyside Yard, and within Penn Station. These three lines share all four tunnels and 75% of the passenger platforms. LIRR has exclusive use of Tracks 17-21 and they share tracks 13-16 with Amtrak. Once the train service resumes and the crowds thin by departing on trains, the terminal can be re-opened to new passengers from the street and the situation resolves in an orderly if not convenient manner. All the delayed trains still must observe required separation on the tracks, especially though the Harold Interlocking, once they do get moving. I have detoured to Hicksville a few times over the years. For me, I am just glad to have that option, rather than getting a room in The City for the night. You should try to be more realistic in your expectations, appreciate the scale of our massive mass transit operations and the fact that we are dealing with mechanical and electrical systems which do malfunction. Try to adopt a more flexible approach to commuting and to keep a cheery disposition.
Jim November 29, 2012 at 07:35 PM
Linda Otta: "Mitt was a sorry excuse for a candidate? Obama must really suck then to have run such a close race to such a sorry excuse for a candidate." Really, you think it was a close race? Obama won the electoral college 332-206, a difference of 126 and 62% to Mittens 38%. Obama had 65,082,030 votes to Mittens 60,565,840 - a difference of 4,516,190 or 3.6%. If you think that's a close race, you really are an idiot.
Jim November 29, 2012 at 07:36 PM
Linda Otta: "Mitt was a sorry excuse for a candidate? Obama must really suck then to have run such a close race to such a sorry excuse for a candidate." Really, you think it was a close race? Obama won the electoral college 332-206, a difference of 126 and 62% to Mittens 38%. Obama had 65,082,030 votes to Mittens 60,565,840 - a difference of 4,516,190 or 3.6%. If you think that's a close race, you really are delusional.
Stevo November 29, 2012 at 07:42 PM
Look who climbed out of her hole!!

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