Train stuck in snowy Sierra back en route; passengers rankled
February 3, 2008
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – The train that had to stay parked overnight on snowy tracks high in the Sierra Nevada is chugging along again en route to Chicago, an Amtrak spokeswoman said.
Two of Amtrak’s California Zephyr trains and about 400 had passengers were initially stranded Friday night after a large snow plow fell through a trestle and onto the tracks, blocking the rail.
One San Francisco area-bound train was pulled to Reno and its 165 passengers were put up in a hotel or bused to their destinations, Amtrak spokeswoman Karina Romero said.
The other train, which was headed from the Bay Area to Chicago, remained in the mountains. About 60 people were taken by bus back to the San Francisco Bay area overnight and 155 chose to stay on the heated train and sleep either in their seats or in reserved sleeping cars.
The tracks were cleared early Saturday and the train got going again just before 8 a.m. The passengers are scheduled to arrive in Chicago Monday morning, about 16 hours behind schedule.
Passengers interviewed by a newspaper relayed differing stories of the experience. Some, who had sleeping cabins, said they were comfortable and not put out, while others felt neglected during the ordeal.
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“Being in the last car we had no heat, no blankets,” passenger