Two cracked rails on separate Metro lines led to delays, confusion and frustration during the heart of the Thursday morning commute.
With the coldest temperatures of the season, rails cracked at East Falls Church and outside Prince George’s Plaza.
“We know it was a very difficult morning,” says Dan Stessel, Metro spokesman.
Some riders contacted WTOP saying they were kept in the dark without
adequate communication regarding why there were delays and when the next
train would arrive. Many complained of long commutes and took to Twitter to vent their frustrations.
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Cracked rail, cold weather problems cause Metro delays
WASHINGTON - Thousands of Metro riders faced crowded trains and even more crowded platforms as they experienced extreme delays while the transit system repaired cracked rails and a disabled train Thursday morning.
The frigid temperatures wrecked havoc on the rails, even freezing doors shut. The problems were reported on five of six Metro lines.
With a 230-mile system, Metro spokesman Dan Stessel says it’s difficult to predict where a cracked rail is going to occur. Two cracked rails have been reported Thursday.
On Metro’s Green/Yellow Line, there were delays in both directions after a rail cracked.
There are delays on Metro’s Orange/Silver Line due to the cracked rail at East Falls Church. Trains
were running on a single track between East Falls Church and Ballston but resumed regular service before 1 p.m. Riders should expect residual delays.
The Orange Line had delays of 20 minutes during the single-tracking, Metro says.
On the Orange Line, a disabled train outside the Smithsonian stop was causing delays for Vienna-bound commuters.
Stessel says the extreme temperatures were “wreaking havoc on some of our railcars,” especially on the Red Line.
On the Red Line, Metro was no longer single-tracking as of 10 a.m., but delays remained. Earlier, there were delays in both directions due to weather-related equipment problems, including a door problem that forced a Red Line train to offload at Van Ness.
Earlier, Metro had a train malfunction outside Gallery Place.
Only the Blue Line avoided delays or problems. Metro managed to escape the snowy commute that blind sided drivers earlier this week.
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