Amtrak cancels PA service, LANTA sees ridership drop

Written by on March 18, 2020

Amtrak cancels PA service, LANTA sees ridership drop

By Chloe Nouvelle

March 18, 2020

Photo | Chloe Nouvelle / WLVR

Amtrak says it’s suspending the Keystone Line from PA to NYC today [Wednesday], and all Pennsylvania service starting Thursday.

In the Lehigh Valley, WLVR’s Chloe Nouvelle reports so far there are no planned changes to the region’s public transportation, despite a drop in riders.

LANTA, the Lehigh Valey’s public transit system will continue to run a normal schedule. According the LANTA Executive Director, Owen O’Neil, they’re essential to helping people get to where they to go.

“Our plan is to continue to operate as long as we can and as much service as we can- given what our staffing situation is, unless there is at some point some type of order to cease operations,” said O’Neil

The transit system has plans in place should they experience a staffing shortage and need to cut down on service.

“If it’s a weekday- we would operate a Saturday level service, which is slightly lower–  if we were experiencing- kind of minor impacts to staffing levels,” O’Neil. “If we were experiencing something a little more significant – we would drop down to a Sunday level service.”

Even before the governor’s order, O’Neil says LANTA ridership was down. For buses by about 30% and for LANTA vans as much as 60%.

The system is also disinfecting its buses and vans overnight as often as they can.

Watch Chloe’s full PBS39 News Tonight Report.


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