Shoreline East riders are becoming increasingly frustrated with train cancellations and delays. On Wednesday, Oct. 17, the Shoreline East Riders Advocacy Group plans to discuss their concerns at the Clinton Police Department at 7 p.m.
Department of Transportation representative Judd Everhart said the DOT will be sending a couple people to the meeting.
Complaints range from late train service to locomotives breaking down.
“Yesterday I was at the train station in New Haven. Train never came, no announcement,” said Patrick Goodale, a Shoreline East rider from Clinton.
In April, the DOT began repairing a portion of the tracks and fixing drainage issues. They canceled 15 trains and replaced them with bus service. Those repairs are expected to be complete on Nov. 15 however, John Bernick, the assistant rail administrator for the DOT, said they might not fully restore service.
DOT administrators are considering sticking with a mixed train and bus service until they can guarantee the trains will run properly and on time.
The DOT is working to restore reliability and confidence in Shoreline East, according to Bernick.
Several locomotives have been sent out of state for repair. Four were sent for a top deck overhaul in Illinois and they are back in service. Two more locomotives will be coming back, one in December, the other in January. The DOT is also sending 12 locomotives to Indiana for a full overhaul. They expect the first six to come back within a year.
Amtrak contractors are also doing minor maintenance repairs to the trains.
If a train does break down, the DOT has buses on standby in New Haven, Old Saybrook and Hartford.