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Rail News: Passenger Rail

WMATA investigates latest friction ring incident


The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) is investigating another friction ring that was found along its tracks.

The ring, which is part of a train’s braking system, was discovered along Red Line tracks Tuesday. Track inspectors found the part near the Rhode Island Station during a routine inspection, WMATA officials said in a prepared statement.

Although the friction ring showed no signs of failure, bolts that attach the part to the rail car were broken, which provided investigators an initial indication of cause, they said. WMATA has removed the car that lost the part.

The agency’s investigation into the factors contributing to friction ring detachments is continuing, WMATA officials said. Tuesday’s incident was the latest case of friction rings falling off cars. A friction ring fell off a train in December 2011 and again in January.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 6/21/2012