Equipment Failure May Have Caused Red Line Derailment

Dummy truck may have caused incident

Wednesday, Sep 4, 2013  |  Updated 6:26 AM EDT
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Equipment Failure May Have Caused Red Line Derailment

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Equipment failure may be to blame for last week's derailment on Metro's Red Line.

Travel between the Fort Totten and NoMa-Gallaudet stations was suspended for several hours Friday after two rail cars on an empty train derailed between the Rhode Island Avenue and Brookland stations.

Investigators believe a dummy truck may have caused the front wheels of one car and the rear wheels of another to leave the track, The Washington Post reports. Dummy trucks are similar to a spare tire on a car and are used to move cars that aren't working.

“It is one of the possibilities,” Jim Benton, the chairman of the Tri-State Oversight Committee, told the Post. “Maybe the wheels were bad on the dummy truck. All of that has to be looked at in detail.”

Benton's committee oversees Metro's safety.

The non-revenue train derailed as it was being moved from the Brentwood Rail Yard to the Greenbelt Rail Yard. Dummy trucks were on two of the cars at the time of the derailment.

No passengers were on the train, and no injuries were reported.

The third rail, signal cables and track components were damaged in the incident.

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