Downed Tree Blocking Tracks

NJ Transit is reported train delays due to a downed tree near Watchung Ave. Trains are terminating at Bay Street, Clever Commuters report.
A tipster in the vicinity of Woodman Field in Montclair just alerted us that an NJ Transit train stopped for about 20 minutes on the track, then (after a series of loud booms) proceeded to go backwards.
Here’s what NJ Transit is saying:

Travel Alerts
Mar 24, 2010 05:54:08 PM
Rail Update: Montclair Line train #6263, the 4:52pm from New York Penn is Indefinite delayed near Watchung Avenue due a downed tree near Watchung Avenue.
Mar 24, 2010 05:51:44 PM
Montclair-Boonton Line train #1009, the 5:16pm from Hoboken, is delayed at Glen Ridge due to track obstruction ahead.

If you’re on the train, let us know what’s going on.

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  1. Just got off the 4:52 that first encountered the down tree. We were JUST about to pull into Watchung station when we came to a sudden halt–torturous! So close, yet so far. Lights went out, came back on. Sat there for about 10-15 minutes while waiting for word from NJ Transit and watching high schoolers frolic in the field next to where we were “parked.” We eventually backed up and were let out at Walnut station. Luckily, a kind train buddy (and his wife who picked him up) gave me a lift back to Watchung Ave where my car was parked. Glad to be home!

  2. I can see the tracks from my window. A train just went by (very slowly) heading toward Watchung station. It looks like the track has been cleared.

  3. A tree came down, along with two power lines. The bangs heard were the transistor boxes. Powerlines down caused two small brush fires a couple of yards from the tracks, the police, fire and transit police were on the scene v quickly. All seems to be getting sorted, as of midnight crews are out there working on the lines.

  4. NJ Transit was in full glory today. At Hoboken, the announcement on the 5:43 was “train suspended indefinitely.” After making that announcement several times, the conductor said, “I recommend you seek alternative means of transport.” What exactly the alternatives were he didn’t specify. Helicopter? Jet pack?
    I hopped a Summit train to Broad St where I hoped to catch the 6:18 from NY Penn, which Clever Commute informed me was running to Bay St. (The conductor knew absolutely nothing; he was as naive as a bare-bottomed baby.) The monitor indicated that the approaching train was indeed making all stops on the Boonton line. A Hackettstown train approached, stopped, failed to open its doors, and pulled out. It was completely empty. A ghost train!
    The next train was the 6:17 from Hoboken. Apparently in the ten minutes since I left, they had rejuvenated train service there. MAybe they were just waiting for me to leave.
    I’ve traveled through the Soviet Union back in the days of Gorbachov. I’m not bragging. I mention merely to point out that finding information in Socialist Russia was a lot easier than from NJ Transit. Perhaps because nobody ever expected anything.

  5. Do you actually know what transistor boxes are, BaristaPet? I only ask because if you do, I might be falling in love with you.

  6. Is that not what the boxes are called? Did I not understand? I still have problems to this day with ‘donkey’s years’ and ‘donkey’s ears’. I am your typical Mrs Malaprop!

  7. I think you mean transformer boxes – they take high voltage electricity that’s suitable for long-distance transport and step it down before it goes to your house.

  8. I got on the 6:17 @ Hoboken around 6 and noted a lack of rider volume. There were no announcements on the train other than a garbled, “We’ll let them off at Bay St.” clearly not intended for ridership. Finally at around 6:15 we heard about the tree and were told that the train ride would end at Bay St. Fine with me, I get off at Bloomfield. I got home about 15 minutes late and had slightly overcooked stuffed sole for dinner followed by 8 rolls of Smarties, 6 slices of sargento swiss cheese and 2 cans of coke. … I feel a little queasy today…

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