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As if it couldn’t get any worse…

August 27, 2007, 2:37 PM

The things that happen on Metro sometimes verge on comical. And boy, am I glad I didn’t have to take Metro anywhere yesterday, opting to drive instead. Why? How about five different smoke/fire incidents through various parts of the system, affecting five lines?

Seriously. And all within about three hours’ time. First there was a smoke condition at Mt. Vernon Square at 5:46 PM Sunday due to an insulator problem. Then a fire in an equipment room at National Airport six minutes later. Then another 38 minutes later, a fire on the tail tracks at Huntington (i.e. the dead-end tunnels south of the station), causing the station to be temporarily closed. Then 38 minutes after that, there’s a cable fire at Farragut North, causing that station to be closed, and a bustitution was set up between Dupont Circle and Metro Center. And then at 8:12 PM, a train at Foggy Bottom had brake problems, causing the temporary closure of Farragut West station due to heavy smoke down the tunnel.

What makes it (somewhat) comical, though, is that while Metro was doing its darndest with the bustitution during the fire, the bus then caught fire! As if things couldn’t get any worse.

Meanwhile, I’d be interested in learning what the fleet numbers were for the train that had the brake problems, and the bus that caught fire, mainly to see if it’s an older vehicle (think a Rohr rail car or a Flxible bus), or a newer vehicle (say, a CAF rail car or an Orion VII bus).

Like I said, I’m glad that yesterday, I drove where I was going rather than taking Metro. But at least my commute today to work was uneventful, even if longer than usual. We were stop-and-go all the way from New York Avenue to Dupont Circle. No fun. But no fires, either, thankfully.

Web site: "Outbreaks of Fire, Smoke Shut Down Metro Stations" from The Washington Post

Song: Eh, whatever.

Quote: Still, I'd say that five fires practically at once like that is downright strange, though they say it's not likely foul play.

Categories: WMATA