Amtrak Cracks Down Again on Private Cars

Private car owners have suffered another setback with Amtrak banning passengers from riding on open platform or in open dutch doors on a moving train.

In a special notice, Amtrak said private car owners and guests can only be on an observation deck or at an open dutch door when a train is stationary.

The rule also requires that when a train is stopped that those on a rear platform or in an open dutch door must wear protective eye wear and that sufficient hand holds and railings must be available for all occupants

Leaning beyond the sides or rear planes of any private car and liquids are also prohibited in these areas when a train is stationary.
Officials with the American Association of Private Railroad Car Owners and the Railroad Passenger Car Alliance say the latest decree by Amtrak represents a reversal of an earlier agreement to ban riding on open platform decks only in the Northeast Corridor.

The two private car trade groups had worked with Amtrak last year to create a safety manual that address platform riding.

AAPRCO officials believe that the change occurred the manager the private rail car groups worked with at Amtrak moved to another department and the agreements it reached with the passenger carrier was never published on the Amtrak website.

“We immediately asked for reconsideration of the ban, but we’re told it came from safety – and no change,” APPRCO President Tony Marchiando told Trains magazine.

Amtrak had agreed to a rule proposed by the private car owners that those riding an open platform must be seated, wear eye protection and that no drinks of any kind were to be consumed on the rear platform.

Amtak’s former special movements manager had approved the private car safety manual, which has since been published.

“Of course, our membership is very disappointed with this,” Marchiando said. “Platform riding has always been an important part of the private car experience and very, very few, only minor, injuries have ever occurred. Our intention is to work to allow safe riding on platforms with sensible rules and procedures.”

Amtrak said car owners who fail to adhere to safety rules could be suspended or see their car’s permission to operate on any Amtrak train be revoked.

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One Response to “Amtrak Cracks Down Again on Private Cars”

  1. Bennett Levin Says:

    It is regretable that a few selfish and self centered car owners in the East baited Amtrak by their continue abuse of the use of open Dutch doors and platform riding on the NEC after they were warned by Amtrak. The poed the bear and now the entire country suffers and no one is held to account. Amtrak should have banished the bad actors years ago. AAPRCO leadership was well aware of the problem and delibertly chose to turen a blind eye to what anyone with half a brain would recognize as inviting a tragedy. Folks traveling in a higher speed enviorment belong inside the car body not hanging out with their favorite beverage in their hand waiting for and Acela to slam by in the opposite direction at 150MPH.

    Wait until Amtrak cracks down on Rule G violations on their property…………

    The car owners and their guests did this to themselves and continue to invite more punitive actions as the result of being tone deaf to common sense and basic safety.

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