Alaska Railroad resumes services following earthquake

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The Alaska Railroad will restore all regularly scheduled freight and passenger services beginning today, Tuesday, Dec. 4, following the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that struck Southcentral Alaska on Friday, Nov. 30.

The Alaska Railroad suspended its regularly scheduled services after the incident in order to assess damages along its nearly 500 miles of tracks and give crews the ability to quickly begin working on needed repairs.

Following the earthquake, there were a number of areas that sustained damage, and some sections of track that were deemed impassable required immediate repairs. These included an area just south of Eklutna Lake as well as a portion of track south of the Cheri Lake Road crossing.

In a coordinated effort from Railroaders across the state, teams worked tirelessly to ensure the entire Railroad, including tracks, bridges, facilities and railroad systems, were safe for service.

Yesterday, the evening of Monday, Dec. 3, the first trains successfully covered the entire length of the tracks from Anchorage to Fairbanks. Additional freight services will run today.

“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,” says Dale Wade, vice president of marketing and customer service for the Alaska Railroad. “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.”

The first post-earthquake passenger train to run will be the Winter Hurricane Turn Train on Thursday, Dec. 6, followed by regularly scheduled Aurora Winter Trains this weekend. Holiday Trains will also resume service this weekend. Winter and summer services will continue as scheduled, and all package and day trip itineraries are now available for booking.