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Brightline passengers say canceled late night train stranded them in Miami

Posted at 9:45 PM, Oct 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-09 08:26:39-04

Frustrated Brightline customers say a canceled late-night train to West Palm Beach left them stranded in Miami.

“You have no concern for our safety and security. You abandoned us,” said Melissa Rogozinski, who was one of the eight people who thought they would be on the 11:58 p.m. train north from Miami to West Palm Beach on Sept. 22.

Richard Rivera took his wife and twin 8-year-old boys to the Marlins game that day. He says they were never told their return trip was canceled. 

Another passenger, Mark Lopez, and his companion had their initial 11:13 p.m. train canceled via email and was scheduled on the 11:58 p.m. No mention that would also be canceled. 

From an email promotion, Melissa Rogozinski, learned about the 11:58 p.m. train. She planned to buy her tickets day of for her and her companion. She says there was no follow up that ride wasn’t happening. 

“There was absolutely no communication by Brightline at all,” she said.

All strangers until that night. They showed up and learned their shared fate. They even took a group photo.

“We get there. Everything was closed. Just people cleaning inside and they wouldn’t open the door,” Rivera said.

The three parties instead, all took respective $80-plus Lyft rides back to West Palm Beach. 

“We all need to be fully compensated for what it cost us for Brightline to cancel that train, lock their doors, abandon us and lie to us about what happened and why,” Rogozinski said.

Both Richard and Melissa say they went to the West Palm Beach station the next day and were told the canceled Drake concert at the American Airlines arena led to the called off train ride. 

The three groups, Mark, Melissa, and Richard, actually co-wrote a letter asking for Brightline to rectify things in September. 

They say Brightline never responded. 

Monday, after we reached out to Brightline, in a statement they said, “We’re grateful for the feedback and currently taking steps to make it up to any guests affected. 

Melissa said Brightline called shortly after our interview Monday.