MBTA Red Line Resumes Service After Derailment Repairs

mbta red line derailment

The derailed MBTA Red Line train, under a bridge near the JFK/UMass stop. (Kim Tunnicliffe/WBZ NewsRadio)

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Delays remain, but the MBTA's Red Line is back in business a day after a derailment—the second in four days—wreaked havoc for commuters.

According to T officials, service was suspended at 11 a.m. Wednesday between North Quincy and JFK/UMass Stations to make additional repairs to the structures used to house hardware that controls the MBTA's signal system.

The day's was completed and shuttle buses have been phased out, though repairs to the tracks and signals will continue. The MBTA said that Red Line service is operating at "reduced levels," and riders going to stops on the Braintree branch of the Red Line will need to switch trains at JFK/UMass.

The transit organization also detailed on Twitter how customers can ride the Commuter Rail for free to alleviate some of the delays.

 

The derailment happened shortly after 6 a.m. Tuesday near the JFK/UMass station.

Boston Fire said one person suffered a minor injury, but refused treatment. They said all 60 passengers who were evacuated from the train were able to walk off on their own.

The cause is still under investigation.

At a press conference in Dorchester Tuesday afternoon, MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak said the derailment caused significant damage not only to the train, but also to the tracks and signaling system.

Poftak said the train's removal would be difficult due to the fact that it was lodged under the Columbia Road Bridge. The train was removed overnight.

Tuesday's derailment comes just three days after a Green Line trolley jumped the tracks near Kenmore Station. That incident left 10 people injured and forced the evacuation of hundreds of passengers through a tunnel between the Kenmore and Fenway stations.

MBTA officials said details of the investigation into Saturday's derailment point to operator error. They've ruled out a vehicle malfunction or problems with the infrastructure as the cause.

Poftak said he has asked for a third-party assessment of all main-line derailments on the MBTA over the last two years.

"I want a fresh set of eyes on this to make sure we're not missing something," Poftak said. "We have an obligation to the riding public and the taxpayers to make sure that we are taking every step possible to address this issue."

Councillor Wu: No Rate Hike On T If There Are Derailments
Councillor Wu: No Rate Hike On T If There Are Derailments
With two derailments on the T system within days of each other, one city official is echoing the call for a no-fare hike until improvements are made.

Poftak added he believes the transit system is safe.

"We hear very clearly and we understand very clearly that this situation with the derailments is not acceptable, and we are taking steps to address that," Poftak said.

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