Power Problems Snarl Trains In, Out of Penn Station

Passengers play the waiting game

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    The power problems will cause a headache for commuters trying to get to work during the morning rush.

    Amtrak has restored service at New Yorks Penn Station that left commuters and holiday travelers stranded for about three hours Wednesday.
        
    The railroad says additional delays are expected as normal service resumes. Long Island Rail Road service has not been affected by the problems.

    NJ Transit spokesman Dan Stessel says a low voltage problem has halted Northeast Corridor, North Jersey Coast Line and Midtown Direct trains into and out of Penn Station, where hundreds of passengers are waiting under the big board where signs just read "Delayed" for all trains.

    Gary Gotham was heading to Virginia for Christmas. He waited under the Amtrak big board for a hopeful sign. But, as a backup, he whipped out his cellphone and started calling hotels "in case I have to spend Christmas in the city," he said. 

    Some trains are stranded just outside Penn Station and others are stuck between Newark and New York City.
        
    Stessel says there is enough electricity to power the lights and heat on the trains, but not the engines.

    Some passengers were more patient than others as they played the waiting game.

    Kelly Lundy, of New Brunswick, had been sitting on her bag at the NJ Transit waiting area for nearly three hours.

    "What can you do," she said, sheepishly looking up from Facebook on her hand-held electronic device. "It's the holidays."

    Most passengers are trying to transfer to Path trains or buses. Midtown Direct trains are being diverted to Hoboken. PATH trains and Port Authority buses are honoring NJ Transit rail passes. The cause of the outage is under investigation.

    NJ TRANSIT customers are encouraged to listen to news broadcasts or go to www.njtransit.com for the latest service information. Service information is also available by calling 973-275-5555.