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Rail News: Maintenance Of Way

Broken rail likely cause of WMATA derailment, agency says

One of the rail cars awaits re-railing in a tunnel.
Photo – WMATA's Twitter account

A Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) Red Line train yesterday derailed outside the Farragut North Station in Washington, D.C.

The train of 7000-series rail cars was carrying 60 passengers when it derailed at about 6:30 a.m. No injuries were reported. Investigators believe a break in the rail caused the derailment, WMATA officials said on Twitter.

Crews performed ultrasonic testing on the rail on Aug. 9, The Washington Post reported. In addition, the rail would have been visually inspected last week under WMATA's protocol, according to the paper.

The incident follows the completion of WMATA's "SafeTrack" accelerated maintenance plan, which wrapped up in summer. The plan crammed three years worth of repair work into one year.

The agency has begun transitioning to a new preventive maintenance and capital program.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 1/16/2018