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Amtrak tests high-speed trains at 165 mph

Posting in Cities

Amtrak's one true high-speed rail line will match the record for the fastest speed attained by a U.S. train, if only for a week and sans passengers.

This week, along the Northeast corridor between Washington, D.C. and Boston, Amtrak will run four tests, covering 100 miles using Acela Express trains, at 165 miles per hour. The tests will take place along portions of the line in Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts, where there trains will eventually increase their speeds to 160 miles per hour. Currently, the Acela reaches a maximum speed of 150 miles per hour.

The project is funded by a $450 million federal high-speed rail program to upgrade equipment to make it viable to run trains at higher speeds.

It's okay to be excited to see Amtrak working to make its trains faster. A few minutes saved in transit is always a good thing, especially along the busy Northeast corridor. But let's make sure to keep this in perspective. China's fastest train is going 268 miles per hour.

[Via Transportation Nation]

Photo: Flickr/Johnathaneric

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— By on September 25, 2012, 3:41 AM PST

Tyler Falk

Contributing Editor

Tyler Falk is a freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. Previously, he was with Smart Growth America and Grist. He holds a degree from Goshen College. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure