Sen. Lautenberg, Amtrak tout NY-NJ tunnel reopening

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Lautenberg added that "[T]he damage this storm did to our tunnels and transit system reminds us how important passenger rail service is to our way of life and our regional economy.

"Thousands of workers spent extra hours commuting, highways were further choked with more car traffic and many businesses were hurt," he said. "We must learn from this lesson and work even harder to strengthen and expand our rail infrastructure so that we are prepared the next time.”

Rail service in New Jersey and New York was crippled by flood damage from Sandy. New Jersey Transit and Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) suspended service for most of the week following Sandy, and Amtrak also limited rail service in the state.

Amtrak CEO Joe Boardman said in a statement that the reopening of its tunnel between New York and New Jersey "reflects the tireless efforts of both Amtrak and New Jersey Transit to restore this vitally important transportation link into and out Penn Station."