Sen. Schumer urges Amtrak to drop seat squeeze study

NEW YORK - Senator Charles Schumer is pressing Amtrak to put the brakes on a plan to scale back legroom on its trains.

The railroad is exploring the idea of adding more rows of seats to its cars to boost capacity and profits.

Schumer says to do so would not only be inconvenient and uncomfortable, but also unsafe for passengers.

"When you look at the airlines it's the last place you look for comfort, and that's why air travel is so more dispiriting than was in the old days. Amtrak should not throw out one of the best things about Amtrak and train travel, that is you at least get a seat you can sit and be comfortable in," Schumer said.

Schumer admits Amtrak has been short-changed by the federal government in recent years.

He says there's money that could be invested in Amtrak, but they need to agree on how best to spend it. 

In a statement, an Amtrak spokesperson said, "Amtrak is not currently looking to change its seat spacing for the services we now offer. Like any company, we do continuously look at ways to attract new customers, provide more travel options and enhance the customer experience in order to supplement the great products and services we already offer."

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