Amtrak ridership down in R.I., Northeast for FY2013 after Sandy
AMTRAK REPORTED A RECORD 31.6 million passengers nationwide in fiscal year 2013, but ridership in Rhode Island and the entire Northeast region saw year-over-year declines after damage from Hurricane Sandy last October disrupted Amtrak service along the East Coast.
PROVIDENCE – Despite a decline in Amtrak ridership in the Northeast Corridor, including a drop in Rhode Island due in part to service interruptions caused by Hurricane Sandy, the national rail passenger service set a new record for ridership and revenue in fiscal year 2013.
In a report released Monday, Amtrak said that 660,267 passengers either boarded or disembarked a train in Providence in the fiscal year ended Sept. 30. The Kingston and Westerly stations serviced 152,403 and 39,186 passengers, respectively.
Total passengers in Rhode Island for the 2013 fiscal year numbered 851,856, a decline of 2.6 percent over the fiscal 2012 figure of 874,436, but exceeding the 2011 figure of 821,567 by 3.7 percent.
Ridership for all Northeast Corridor services – which run between Boston and Washington, D.C. – also saw a year-over-year decline, falling slightly to 11.39 million passengers from 11.42 million in fiscal 2012 after Hurricane Sandy disrupted Amtrak service along the East Coast in October of last year.
In spite of the shaky start, fiscal 2013 passenger figures for the Northeast Corridor recovered to claim a spot as the second-best year on record for the region.
Nationally, Amtrak ferried a record 31.6 million passengers in fiscal year 2013, up from 31.2 million in 2012, the 10th ridership record for Amtrak railways in 11 years.
Ticket revenue for the rail carrier in fiscal 2013 totaled $2.1 billion, an increase on the previous year’s results of 4.2 percent, including a 5.3 percent increase in revenue for travel in the Northeast Corridor to $1.1 billion.
In the release accompanying the 2013 ridership figures, Amtrak also reported that between fiscal year 2010 and fiscal year 2012, the railway returned nearly three dollars to local communities for every one dollar of federal investment and put more than $12.6 billion back into the economy through the purchasing of goods and services and the payment of its employee salaries.