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On July 31, Peru Rail and Inca Rail left hundreds of customers with little to no information on the events that led to the delay of trains that were set to have departed the station as early as 8:30am from Aguas Calientes, Cusco, Peru. At 8:30pm, hundreds of customers were still unaware of when they could expect their trains to arrive and where their trains would drop them off (there are multiple possible spots). One staff member indicated that supposedly thousands of individuals were impacted by the train delays. There was no effort made on the part of Peru Rail or Inca Rail to keep customers informed on the updates of the delays.
As of late afternoon, around 5pm, Peru Rail employees were not present to answer questions or indicate to customers the plan for ensuring everyone a safe arrival back to their final destinations.
For individuals who lost flights, hotel reservations and other indirect expenses due to the trail delays, they were told that the only compensation Peru Rail ever provides is refund of tickets.
When trains finally arrived around 10pm to pick-up some (of the hundreds) of the customers waiting for a seat, a total state of panic ensued as customers rushed past the gates to try to secure a spot on the trains that had arrived. Individuals could be seen sprinting across the platform to different train wagons hoping to be allowed to board. It was not until we were boarded that we were informed what the final destination of the trains was. Those who had paid for a train ticket to Poroy (located 30 mins. from Cusco) were now notified that they were being dropped off at Ollantaytambo (approx. 2 hrs. from Cusco). The trains arrived at Ollantaytambo around midnight and without any transportation arrangements made by Peru Rail, customers had to find their own way back to Cusco. For those who could afford to pay for private transportation, there were a variety of taxi options available to return to Cusco. For customers who could not afford to pay for private transportation, this created a very uncomfortable and unsafe situation as the city was completely shut down. In this situation, the responsibility should have rested on Peru Rail to ensure that customers arrived to their final destinations safely.
It is not only the total lack of regard for the financial losses that are frustrating, but the total lack of transparency and communication on the part of Peru Rail and Inca Rail.
In short, this petition is in support of a full revision of Peru Rail and Inca Rail's compensation policies to ensure that future travellers will be fully compensated for losses incurred (missed flights, hotel reservations) as a result of service delays that are a caused by Peru Rail or Inca Rail. Additionally, the total state of panic demonstrated by both Peru Rail and Inca Rail staff seemed to suggest that the existing contingency plan (if there is one) is inadequate and fails to inspire confidence in staff and customers alike.
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