Metro Riders Stranded at Station

Passengers locked in and left to wait

By Matthew Stawarz
|  Friday, Sep 25, 2009  |  Updated 7:14 PM EDT
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Metro Riders Stranded at Station

A handful of Metro riders were forced to spend some extra time inside a Virginia station.
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A late-night commute took a little longer than expected for a handful of Metro riders who spent a little quality time inside a Virginia station.

Several people called News4 early Friday morning to say they had been locked in the Van Dorn Metro station in Alexandria.

They said the station manager locked up before the last train had arrived.  When those 10 got off the train at about 1:05 a.m., four couldn't get out.

Six of the 10 were able to squeeze through the slats that blocked one exit. From inside, one of the trapped riders called police, who arrived to free the trapped at about 1:30 a.m.

"It's totally unacceptable," said Tijan Ceesay, one of the transit inmates. "This is the biggest democracy in the world, it shouldn't happen. People cannot be held against their will because there was no communication."

The station manager apparently thought he saw his last train at 12:30 a.m.

"He went upstairs and met the train and those customers and helped those customers exit the station," said Metro spokesman Steven Taubenkibel. "That station manager thought that was his last train of the evening."

Metro said it is conducting an internal investigation of this "extremely rare occurence."

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