Amtrak backs away from $25,000 charge, will carry Illinois passengers in wheelchairs at regular price

Passenger railroad responds to criticism, including that of U.S. senator, over fee to carry members of advocacy group to conference
Trains Industry Newsletter
Get a weekly roundup of the industry news you need.
By signing up you may also receive occasional reader surveys and special offers from Trains magazine. View our privacy policy.

CHICAGO — Amtrak has retreated from its stance that two wheelchair users would have to pay $25,000 to take a train from Chicago to Bloomington, Ill., saying it would find a way to carry those passengers — and two others headed to the same conference — for the regular $16 ticket cost.

National Public Radio, which first reported the case of staff members for disability service and advocacy group Access Living [see “Amtrak asks passengers in wheelchairs to pay $25,000 for trip in Illinois,” Trains News Wire, Jan. 20, 2020], reported Monday evening that “two senior Amtrak officials” called a lawyer for Access Living and said the passenger railroad would find space to carry all the passengers in wheelchairs at the regular price.

U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), who lost both legs in military service in Iraq, had called Amtrak’s stance “outrageous” and requested a meeting with CEO Richard Anderson. In a statement to NPR, Amtrak apologized to Access Living “for their inconvenience as we have been working through how to serve their travel needs.” The company said it would review its poiicy and meet with Duckworth.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

  • Previous Day
  • January 21, 2020
  • Next Day
Leave a Comment
Want to leave a comment?
Only registered members of are allowed to leave comments. Registration is FREE and only takes a couple minutes.

Login or Register now.
Please keep your feedback on-topic and respectful. Trains staffers reserve the right to edit or delete any comments.


The history of the Transcontinental Railroad.


Learn more about the stories and photos in this months issue

Newsletter Sign-Up

By signing up you may also receive occasional reader surveys and special offers from Trains magazine.Please view our privacy policy
Subscribe Up To 54% off the newsstand price!
Subscribe To Trains Mag Today