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When power lines came down, light rail became best alternate

August 4, 2005

NEWARK, NJ When overhead power lines came down yesterday on the Amtrak-owned Northeast Corridor in Bucks County, Pa., NJ TRANSIT staff took action to help thousands of impacted Amtrak and SEPTA customers, extending the hours of River LINE service by 90 minutes and running extra buses between Trenton and Philadelphia.

Working with Conrail, NJ TRANSIT managers extended River LINE light rail service between Trenton and Camden until 10:30 p.m. Hundreds of Amtrak and SEPTA customers were accommodated on light rail trains for alternate transportation to the Walter Rand Transportation Center in Camden, where connections to PATCO Hi-Speed Line trains could be made. NJ TRANSIT also provided extra bus service on the 409 line, including special express service from Trenton to Philadelphia. During the disruption, the River LINE and NJ TRANSIT bus service honored Amtrak and SEPTA tickets.

"The River LINE came to the rescue of hundreds of customers last night," said Joe North, NJ TRANSIT Manager of Light Rail Operations. "Thanks to unprecedented cooperation from Conrail, we provided an additional 90 minutes of service between Trenton and Camden, which proved to be an excellent alternative for hundreds of affected travelers."

Under an operating agreement with Conrail, River LINE weekday service normally ends with the 9:05 p.m. departure from Trenton, which enables freight trains to operate in the overnight hours.

The service disruption, which began around 6:30 p.m., also caused train congestion between Princeton Junction and Trenton on the Northeast Corridor. To mitigate customer delays, NJ TRANSIT offered alternate shuttle bus service between Hamilton and Trenton.

The River LINE provides convenient connections to the Northeast Corridor at Trenton Rail Station from 17 stations in Camden and Burlington counties. NJ TRANSIT customers holding monthly or weekly rail passes can ride the River LINE anytime at no additional charge and parking is free at all stations except Trenton. For complete schedule and fare information, visit

NJ TRANSIT is the nation's largest statewide public transportation system providing more than 779,200 daily trips on 240 bus routes, three light rail lines and 11 commuter rail lines. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 162 rail stations, 52 light rail stations and more than 17,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.