Southwest Chief

Amtrak To Provide Bus Connections To Two Train Routes

Apr 18, 2016
Adam Moss / Flickr Creative Commons

Amtrak service is returning to Wichita for the first time since 1979. The company has announced new bus routes to both Newton and Oklahoma City.

According to Amtrak, the last time one of their trains had direct service to Wichita was in 1979, when the Lone Star route traveled from Houston to Chicago. Those hoping for train service to come back will have to settle for a bus.

The company announced two bus routes will connect Wichita to the Southwest Chief train, which rolls through Newton, and the Heartland Flyer, which goes through Oklahoma City.

Sean Sandefur / KMUW

The National Transportation Safety Board has released its preliminary report on an Amtrak train derailment that injured 28 people near Cimarron, Kansas, last month. Damages to the train and railroad will cost about $1.4 million.

The train was carrying 130 passengers and 14 crew members as it traveled from Los Angeles to Chicago. It derailed just after midnight on March 14.

National Transportation Safety Board

A truck that ran into a section of BNSF Railway track, deflecting the track up to 14 inches, may be a cause of the Amtrak derailment that happened near Dodge City early Monday.

  

From the AP:

A truck used to deliver feed to a business where cattle are fattened hit the train track and shifted it at least a foot before an Amtrak train derailed in southwest Kansas and injured at least 32 people, an investigator said.

Sean Sandefur / KMUW

Investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board say an agricultural truck collided with railroad tracks near Cimarron, Kan., prior to an Amtrak train derailing in the same area.

Sean Sandefur / KMUW

An Amtrak train carrying more than 140 people derailed near Dodge City early Monday morning. The train was traveling from Los Angeles to Chicago. As KMUW’s Sean Sandefur reports, at least 30 people were injured.

A group of Emporia residents is trying to raise funds for an impact study in the hopes of bringing Amtrak back to Emporia.

Members of the Emporia Amtrak Task Force have been talking to Amtrak and BNSF railroad staff, as well as Emporia State University and community leaders.

BNSF owns the tracks on which Amtrak's Southwest Chief runs.

Wikipedia

Officials want to hear from you about the effect that passenger rail service will have in Wichita.

The Wichita Public Library is hosting a Brown Bag Lunch discussion on the issue at its central location on August 27 at noon, in coordination with the League of Women Voters - Wichita Metro.

Vice Mayor Pete Meitzner will speak. Meitzner is leading Wichita's efforts to enhance transportation.