Amtrak Offering Carry-On Bicycle Service on Vermont Route - similar to MO's River Runner - The New York Times

Headlines are quick hits from media outlets from Missouri and around the world. Follow the headline link for the full story. The source of this headline says:

Beginning May 1, [2016] Amtrak [began offering] carry-on bike service, allowing passengers to ride in designated cars outfitted with bike racks on its Vermonter line, which operates each day between Washington, D.C., and St. Albans, Vt., with stops in cities including Philadelphia, New York, Hartford, Conn., Springfield, Mass., and Essex Junction, Vt.

“We look forward to measuring the success of this service with an eye to expansion to additional routes across our national network,” Deborah Stone-Wulf, Amtrak’s vice president of sales and customer service said in a statement.

Cyclists who wish to use the service must arrive at their station a half-hour before boarding time. Train cars with bike service will have “bike-friendly” stickers on them, and there will be instructions in the rack area about how to load the bikes. The front wheel of each bike must be removed to fit it into the space, and extras, like panniers and saddle bags, must be removed as well before you add the bike to the rack. An Amtrak crew member will be on hand to help.

MoBikeFed comment: Over the past couple of years, Amtrak has greatly expanded its roll-on bicycle service to routes across the country.

MoBikeFed has been working with a nationwide group of advocates who would like to see roll-on bicycle service available on *every* Amtrak route nationwide.

The Missouri River Runner, running two trains between St. Louis and Kansas City every day, has allowed roll-on bicycle service since the mid 1990s, when MoBikeFed leaders approached Missouri legislators about the possibility. (Regional Amtrak service like the River Runner is funded by the state.)

But the Missouri rail cars have never had the proper bicycle racks or facilities to safely stow the bicycles.

So the importance of the Vermont experiment is that the Vermonter has the *same type of rail cars Amtrak uses on the Missouri River Runner.*

So if the experiment with retrofitting bicycle racks on the Vermonter was a success, it could pave the way for retrofitting hundreds more similar rail cars across the U.S. for roll-on bicycle use.

Including the Missouri River Runner!

So stay tuned--because the roll-on bicycle experiment in Vermont was indeed a resounding success. Other recent Amtrak experiments with roll-on bicycle access have been a success as well.

We understand that Amtrak sold no fewer than 55,000 bicycle tickets last year. That's a lot.

More about bicycle access on Amtrak trains in Missouri and across the U.S. here:

http://MoBikeFed.org/Amtrak

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