Kelly&Kelly wrote: ↑Mon Sep 27, 2021 6:31 pm Trains that are cancelled are not carried as late. Cancellations are reported separately in daily reporting to the media.I don't know if this is still LIRR practice, but used to be that if a train was delayed for any reasons, even if jammed full, lots of other trains would be allowed to go around it to prevent them from being late. I'd experienced 30 to 60 minute delays from this. Though one time it was different - my inbound was held up for something, but once 'cleared', our train was allowed to proceed at track speed, and made up most of the delay, essentially doing the trip to Penn in about 45 minutes rather than the usual 65. Mind you, total distance of the trip (ignoring the 5 miles from my station to where we were delayed) is only 40 miles. Other than slowing down for Jamaica (but no extra delay), it was much faster than normal. And this was in a DM based 8 C3 car train.
Back in 1980, a timing system was proposed that would tabulate "passenger minutes late". It would factor the number of passengers on trains and thus weigh a late train with 2000 riders more heavily than it would a train with a handful. It would also consider missed connections. Obviously kicking out an empty connecting train on time and stranding hundreds of riders who wished to board it from a late arrival should be considered...
The system was never adopted because it went against the standard OTP of the rail industry, and as such was knocked down by the AAR and other national groups.
In reality, a dispatcher will always hold a lightly traveled train (make it late) if necessary to expedite a heavy train. It's just good practice that a seasoned dispatcher (or Train Director) follows in his work. They also consider future delays that will be caused or prevented by their actions.
Schedules are sometimes tight and where they are, the experience of crews, operators and dispatchers work to minimize the number of passengers delayed.
It may not always seem to be the case to riders or employees who don't have access to the whole picture as seen by the dispatcher. In truth, the LIRR has some of the best dispatchers around and most have well earned respect of all those with knowledge of the craft.