TRENTON — A power issue forced NJ Transit to cancel trains during the morning commute for the fifth workday in a row on Thursday.

NJ Transit reported the overhead wire problem at New York Penn Station via its Twitter account. Some early morning trains already on their way to New York were held on their approaches.

Cross-honoring was instituted, with PATH accepting NJT rail tickets and passes at Newark Penn Station, Hoboken, and New York-33rd Street.

Amtrak, which maintains equipment and wires at NYPS, has not yet returned a message seeking further information about the problem.

Thursday's tally of canceled trains:

  • RVL train #5416, the 6:53 a.m. from Raritan, is canceled due to equipment issues.
  • NJCL train #2606, the 6:49 a.m. from Long Branch, is canceled due to equipment issues.
  • NJCL train #3500, the 6:27 a.m. from South Amboy, is canceled due to equipment issues.
  • NEC train #3813, the 5:07 a.m. from NYPS, is canceled due to overhead wire problem in NYPS.
  • NEC train #3811, the 4:51 a.m. from NYPS, is canceled due to equipment issues, with customers redirected to train #3813, the 5:07 a.m. from NYPS (also later canceled; see above).
  • M&E train #0404, the 5:41 a.m. from Gladstone, is canceled due to equipment issues.

Based on a running tally of the Twitter accounts for each NJ Transit line, seven trains were canceled during Wednesday morning's rush, while four trains were canceled on Wednesday afternoon for a daylong total of 11.

The Atlantic City Line had 90-minute delays all day Wednesday because of unspecified equipment issues, and continued to have a 45-minute delay on Thursday.

Spokesman Jim Smith on Wednesday continued to blame the cold snap for the cancellations.

"NJ Transit is currently working through a backlog of weather-related equipment issues and is returning rail cars to service as quickly as possible," he told New Jersey 101.5.

Temperatures were seasonable on Wednesday around the state, according to Townsquare New Jersey Chief Meteorologist Dan Zarrow.

"The high temp at Newark yesterday (Wednesday) was 40, normal is 39," Zarrow said.

Last Friday, NJ Transit canceled a total of 25 trains. Monday, 27 trains were canceled, and on Tuesday, 18 were canceled.

At a legislative hearing on Monday, NJ Transit Rail Operations Director Robert Lavell said parts are getting harder to come by for older passenger cars because vendors no longer carry them. Lavell said his department tries to order parts to have on hand, but they also don’t want to have too many on hand that won’t be used.

He estimated there are 65 pieces of equipment waiting for material, and a total of 230 waiting for both scheduled and unscheduled maintenance.

"It is taking us longer to get parts for our equipment. Our procurement department has lost a lot of talented individuals, and we’re in the process of hiring to bring staffing back up again. We also have older equipment that is failing more frequently ... we are in the process of replacing that equipment," Lavell said.

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