Illinois Amtrak train hits 111 mph in test run
JOLIET – In a modest milestone for President Barack Obama's high-speed rail vision, test runs started zooming along a small section of the Amtrak line between Chicago and St. Louis at 111 mph Friday.
The 30-mph increase from the route's current top speed is a morale booster for advocates of high-speed rail in America who have watched conservatives in Congress put the brakes on spending for fast train projects they view as expensive boondoggles. But some rail experts question whether the route will become profitable, pose serious competition to air and automobile travel, or ever reach speeds comparable to the bullet trains blasting across Europe and Asia at 150 mph and faster.
U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn were aboard when an Amtrak train hit 111 mph for the first time in Illinois.
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