America’s premier rail superhighway is slowly falling apart

NEW YORK (AP) — America’s premier rail superhighway is slowly falling apart.

Two thousand trains per day operate on the Northeast Corridor, the rail network that extends from Washington, D.C. to Boston.

Railroad officials and supporters say the vital railway is decaying and increasingly strained, even as its tracks move more people than ever.

Trains lumber through tunnels dug just after the Civil War. They cross bridges more than a century old that can get stuck when they swing open.

Hundreds of miles of wires delivering power to locomotives were hung during the Great Depression.

By one estimate, it would take $21 billion just to replace parts still in use beyond their intended lives.

The corridor’s condition has been getting extra attention following an Amtrak derailment Tuesday in Philadelphia that killed eight people.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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