Alaska Railroad fully restarts Fairbanks service
The Alaska Railroad has restarted its freight and passenger service from Anchorage to Fairbanks, as crews continue repair work across the region.
In a statement Tuesday afternoon, the railroad confirmed that trains had safely traveled all the way from Anchorage to Fairbanks Monday night, with regular service resuming for the rest of the week.
“We could not be more pleased with the work our crews have done to get the Alaska Railroad back up and running in just over 72 hours,” said Dale Wade, the railroad's vice president of marketing and customer service. “This incredible effort from Railroaders speaks to the grit and perseverance of Alaska and its people. We are happy to be able to return to serving our passengers and freight customers so quickly.”
A series of Twitter messages from the railroad Monday afternoon outlined the status of its service after damage that had left tracks north of Anchorage unusable.
On Saturday, railroad spokesman Tim Sullivan Jr. said that at least three spots north of Anchorage were "impassable" to rail traffic following Friday's 7.0 temblor, including one which work crews had photographed near Nancy Lake at Mile 170 of the railroad.
“The cracks are approximately 2 – 4 feet wide and 100 – 150 feet long on either side of the tracks,” Sullivan wrote.
Anchorage railroad facilities were fit to be occupied by people Monday, after workers repaired major damage to its operations center from a burst pipe and minor damage at its train depot in town.
In March, a stretch of track slightly north was closed for days by flooding on the Susitna River.
The first passenger trains to run will be the Winter Hurricane Turn Train on Thursday, followed by Aurora Winter Trains and Holiday Trains over the weekend.
Janis Harper contributed information to this story.
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