Mondays are tough enough, but for thousands of Metro riders who depend on the rail system to get them to work, it was a morning filled with frustration and chaos after a report of an arcing insulator was followed by reports of smoke in the tunnel at the Rosslyn Metro station. Firefighters said smoke was likely being pulled into the tunnel from the insulator at Foggy Bottom. Service was suspended on the Blue, Orange and Silver lines for most of the morning.
Shortly after limited service was restored on all three lines, Metro issued the following apology:
To our Blue, Orange and Silver line customers – Monday, May 11, 2015
Metro apologizes for the significant delays, crowding and inconvenience many of you experienced this morning. Shortly before 8 a.m., Metro’s Operations Control Center received a report of smoke in the tunnel between Rosslyn and Foggy Bottom stations. For your safety, both tracks were taken out of service while appropriate fire department personnel, along with Metro response crews, investigated and rectified the issue.
Please know that the actions taken this morning were with your safety as our highest priority. Despite the fact that there there was no significant smoke in any station, Blue, Orange and Silver line service was suspended between Rosslyn and Foggy Bottom out of caution, resulting in significant delays in service on all three lines.
We established limited shuttle bus service as an alternative, and ran a shuttle train between Rosslyn and Pentagon, enabling some riders to switch to the Yellow Line. Despite these alternatives, we know that many of you experienced extremely long, crowded trips this morning.
Rail service was restored shortly after 11 a.m. on a single track following the replacement of multiple third-rail insulators that were showing signs of electrical sparking (known as “arcing”). Additional repairs required that parts be brought to the location from Maryland, further contributing to the length of our response. We expect to have these repairs completed by mid-afternoon, with normal two-track service in time for this evening’s rush hour.
Again, we sincerely apologize for your experience this morning. Should you wish to share feedback with us, please contact Metro Customer Service at 202-637-1328 or online at wmata.com/contactus.