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Amtrak expects it won’t have enough employees to operate all its trains next month when it plans to enforce Covid-19 vaccine requirements.
As Amtrak prepares to comply with the federal vaccine mandate, it will likely need to temporarily reduce frequency, particularly on its long-distance services, Stephen J. Gardner, president of Amtrak, said in written testimony for a House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing. About 94% of the rail company’s workers have been fully vaccinated as of this week.
“Achieving full service levels, while complying with the vaccination requirement and continuing to prioritize the safety of our customers and employees, is our goal,” Gardner said in his testimony.
The problem is most acute on multi-day routes, where crew bases at some intermediate points have relatively lower rates of vaccinated employees.