Farewell to Mike Scanlon


Mike Scanlon has done a hell of a good job with Caltrain in comparison to the shape it was in before (awful). Also under his purview is SAMTRANS and San Mateo Transportation Authority. Some of the many improvements made under his watch are: Improved station platforms and elimination of “holdout stations”, 96 trains/day, increased bike […]

January, Amtrak Consists, and the Southwest Chief

Report and Commentary by Russ Jackson

January in any year brings the anticipation of problems for passenger trains encountering winter weather all across the country.  January, 2015, was no exception what with the winter storms that dominated the news along Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor.  All intercity train service north of New York City into New England was […]

Amtrak’s 2014 – The Real Stats

Amtrak continually tells us about how many passengers they put into seats in the Northeast corridor. What many suspect because of far longer travel distances, but never can get Amtrak to say, is that in passenger miles (passenger mile = one passenger riding for one mile), and is said by some to be the most […]

Trip Report on the Texas Eagle and other trains: How was it?

Commentary by Russ Jackson
Opinions expressed in this report are the author’s, and not necessarily those of the RailPAC Board

This writer and spouse recently completed a November Amtrak circle trip, starting and ending with the Texas Eagle, which covered much of the western United States. For reporting purposes, the information below primarily covers the portion […]

Amtrak’s largest, most effective, and least subsidized services, the long distance trains and how to save them

Commentary and a trip report by Andrew C. Selden
NOTE: Mr. Selden is President of MinnARP, and is the newly elected President of URPA. He will be a speaker at the RailPAC November 15, 2014 Conference in Sacramento.

The challenge of operating passenger trains, and in particular the higher revenue long distance trains (Amtrak’s largest, […]

HISTORY OF AMTRAK and what has happened since 1971

Commentary by Anthony Haswell, Vice President, Arizona Rail Passenger Association
prepared for National Train Day, May 10, 2014, in Tucson, Arizona
NOTE: Mr. Haswell is the founding father of NARP. He lives in Tucson, Arizona.

The first job of any historian is to determine when a historical event began. Since Amtrak was created to deal […]

Restoration of the Desert Wind is needed now!

Commentary by Anthony Lee, RailPAC Associate Director
At the recent congressional hearing regarding re-authorization of Amtrak, Congresswoman Diane Titus(D) of Las Vegas requested a another study regarding restoring passenger rail service to Las Vegas, which is good news. The best option of restoring passenger rail service is a daily connection to the […]