Amtrak starts suspending lines, Metra service could be affected as freight railroad strike deadline looms

Amtrak has preemptively canceled long distance lines and Metra is warning customers that a freight railworkers' strike could mean no service on many of its lines.

The strike is possible this Friday.

Amtrak canceled lines from Chicago to Los Angeles, the Pacific Northwest, San Francisco and the trip between Los Angeles and San Antonio starting today, so that passengers and trains would not be stranded in the middle of a trip.


Amtrak workers are not involved in the strike but Amtrak and Metra trains both use freight rails. This is a labor issue that could derail many in the workforce.

"If there's a freight strike and it affects commuter trains, it's going to affect everything. Everybody getting into the city. Everybody getting home. I think about the times when I had kids in daycare, if I didn't get home by a certain time I got charged extra. It goes on and on and on," one commuter said.

Amtrak said more cancelations could happen.

Metra said it will be able to operate the Metra Electric and Rock Island lines, however, its nine other lines would be directly impacted by a freight workers strike.

"On the other lines, we are in communication with the relevant freight railroads to understand how we may be impacted and to determine our options," Metra said in a statement. "Negotiations between the freight railroads and unions are ongoing, and we are hopeful that a settlement will be reached before the strike deadline."

Amtrak said in a statement that if your train is canceled, they will "attempt to notify you at least 24 hours in advance at the contact information you provided when making a reservation."

There will also be an opportunity to claim a refund for canceled trips.