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Update: Service resumes between Mt. Vernon Square and L’Enfant Plaza after track fire at Gallery Place

A fire caused by debris shut down Gallery Place metro station during the height of rush hour Monday. One person was treated for possible smoke inhalation. (Video: Victoria Walker/The Washington Post)

Updated at 10:00 p.m.

Normal service was restored Monday night between Mt. Vernon Square and L’Enfant Plaza stations after a track fire caused officials to make emergency repairs.

Metro said the first train, which was heading towards Branch Avenue station, left Mt. Vernon Square at 9:55 p.m. Residual delays continue in both directions, an alert said.

No further details about the fire or the emergency repairs were available, a Metro spokeswoman said.

Original post at 8:30 p.m.

Metro suspended service on a heavily traveled portion of the Green and Yellow lines for emergency repairs Monday night, hours after a track fire broke out at Gallery Place station during the height of the evening rush.

One person was hospitalized for possible smoke inhalation, according to the D.C. fire department, and Gallery Place, a busy transfer point, was briefly shuttered before the transit agency shut down service between Mt. Vernon and L’Enfant.

Metro spokeswoman Morgan Dye said that shortly before 6 p.m., Metro received a report of a “smoldering stud bolt” on the tracks at Gallery Place. A Metro employee quickly extinguished a fire using a fire extinguisher, according to D.C. fire spokesman Doug Buchanan.

Passengers said they were standing on the lower-level platform when they began to smell smoke. Caitlin Dysart, 33, of Northwest Washington, said she was waiting for a Green Line train when she spotted a light haze, about 6 p.m.

“I saw that and figured, ‘no way, I’m getting out of here,’” she said. “A lot of people were still going in.”

Large crowds were reported at the Archives Metro station, where riders were diverted after Gallery Place closed. Dye said Metro Transit Police temporarily closed off the Archives platform to entering passengers to relieve crowding.

Metro fully restored train service about 7 p.m., but a short while later, suspended Green and Yellow Line service between L’Enfant Plaza and Mt. Vernon Square. Dye said track personnel discovered that additional track work was needed.

Metro expected that full service would be restored by the Tuesday morning rush.

The agency is in the midst of a 10-month rebuilding project, dubbed ‘SafeTrack’, aimed at restoring the system to a state of good repair.

Debris fire closes Gallery Place Metro station at height of evening rush, snarling commute

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