Amtrak has begun testing high-speed trains at 165 miles per hour over 100 miles of track in the Northeast Corridor, Amtrak said.
The tests are being conducted on stretches of track in Maryland, Delaware, and New Jersey, where the current top speed is 135 miles per hour, as well as stretches in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, where the top speed is 150 miles per hour, Amtrak said.
“If they are successful, then we hope at some point to be able to increase the top speed to 160 miles per hour,” said Cliff Cole, Amtrak spokesman. Test runs must be performed at 5 miles per hour above the expected maximum.
Amtrak officials will measure the interaction between the Acela Express train and the track, ride quality, and safety.
The increased speeds will not significantly decrease trip times, Cole said. Instead, he said, “If we implement it, it will be bring more reliable service to customers.”