Storm stalls train for 8.5 hours


Amtrak, founded in 1971, connects passengers to more than 500 destinations. Photo via

A passenger train in the region carrying more than 200 people stopped for 8.5 hours on Sunday, due to weather-related engine problems.

Heat, lights and toilets continued to operate on the Amtrak train, while crews tried to solve the problem aboard Wolverine train 353.

The train eventually was connected to another westbound train and arrived in Chicago around 1:30 a.m. CST, said Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari.

The train departed Pontiac, north of Detroit, around 10:30 a.m. EST Sunday, but had trouble between Niles and New Buffalo in southwest Michigan, Magliari said.

Low temperatures "affected the ability of the train to power itself," Magliari said.

"I'm certain some passengers were frustrated, as were we," Magliari said. "It was better to shelter the passengers in place than to off-load passengers, even if buses were available."

Celeste Aruda said it was a long day.

"About every hour they told us, 'Just another half hour until we get someone here who is going to fix this,'" Aruda, a passenger, told Chicago TV station WMAQ. "And every plan they went through just fell through.”

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