Metro (WMATA)

Metro to Keep Reduced Service Through Dec. 31

Metro expects to increase service during December, but the system will still operate at lower levels than usual. 

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Metro will continue offering reduced rail service through the end of the year, WMATA announced Monday.

Last month, Metro pulled all 7000 series rail cars —which represent 60% of its fleet—following a derailment on the Blue Line on Oct.12. near the Arlington Cemetery station.

In a statement the agency said no timeline has been established to return the 7000 series fleet to the tracks. Metro said it is working on putting more 6000 series trains in service to reduce wait times and it expects to increase service during December. However, the system will still operate at lower levels than usual. 

“While we know service is not as frequent as customers would prefer, we will add each train as it becomes available to help incrementally improve service reliability and frequency,” said Metro General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld in a statement. 

Metro riders have been grappling with lengthy delays and less frequent trains for more than a month. Trains have been running every 12 minutes on the Red Line, every 20 minutes on the Green and Yellow lines and every 30 on the Blue, Orange, and Silver lines.

The agency said Monday nearly 75% of all stations had trains arriving every 10 to 12 minutes. 

Wiedefeld previously said they have completed the inspection of all 7000 series railcars for the wheel defect that caused the derailment.

Metro said Monday they will continue with the testing protocols throughout the rest of November and that engineers, safety, and operations teams were preparing for the 7000-series fleet’s return to service.

Metro had been working to bring older model 2000 and 3000 series trains out of storage. 

The service outlook for January 2022 will depend on the completion of the test and restoration plans for the 7000-series, which require approval from the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission.

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