Winter Aggravates Train Delays

January 2011 was NJ Transit’s worst month for train delays in 6 years, since January 2005, according to Mike Frassinelli, writing in the Star-Ledger (February 11).  The railroad classifies trains as “late” if they arrive 6 minutes or more after their schedule.  This January, trains were “late” 8.8% of the time; in January 2010, trains were “late” only 4.1% of the time.  Severe weather on Jan. 12 and Jan. 27, and a vehicle blocking North Jersey Coast Line tracks on Jan. 14, contributed to the delays.  Some of the worst delays were on the Northeast Corridor (New York to Trenton) line, where peak-hour trains were “late” nearly 25% of the time.  In all, 1588 trains were 6 minutes late or more in January, Frassinelli wrote.  In December, the rate was 7.8%, also made worse due to significant storms. The railroad’s goal is to keep the “late” train rate to 5% or lower.