Extra Trains Added To Help Alleviate MBTA Red Line Create More Problems

MBTA Red Line Derailment

(Kim Tunnicliffe/WBZ NewsRadio)

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Last week’s derailment on the MBTA Red Line continued to cause trouble for riders on Monday.

The MBTA added extra Commuter Rail trains to help alleviate problems on the Red Line, but those trains suffered from delays and mechanical problems of their own.

Mechanical problems caused one extra train, originally scheduled for 6:20 a.m., to be delayed.

A second train that was originally scheduled for 8 a.m. was cancelled.

Then, the extra train scheduled to depart Braintree at 9:30 a.m. was also delayed, due to the late arrival of an outbound train.

Some progress was made on Sunday, as Red Line Braintree-Quincy riders no longer have to switch trains at the JFK/UMass station, but delays continue.

“I got on it at North Quincy and I just got off here at JFK and it was slow between the two stations," one rider said. "I made sure I left the house a little bit early."

At the MBTA's Fiscal and Management Control Board meeting Monday, MBTA General Manager Steve Poftak explained the reason for those delays—the three signals heavily damaged in the derailment have yet to be repaired.

"We're trying to determine, how can we put the signal system back together in a way that will allow us to provide automatic service?" Poftak said. "We are still facing delays because we're having to manually switch."

The MBTA couldn't say when those signals would be fully automated again. Until further notice, Red Line riders should expect delays of 20-30 minutes.

Poftak said they're still searching for the cause of the Red Line derailment, but they've ruled out operator error, any problem with the tracks, signals, or power, or foul play.

"We are taking a look at the vehicle itself and the components of the vehicle as we go through and look for the cause," he said.

Every two years, the trains go through ultrasound inspections. The MBTA is now bumping up the timeline, and will be ultrasound-inspecting the entire fleet within the next 1-2 weeks.

Tuesday's derailment was the second to occur within a matter of days; just three days prior, a Green Line train derailed, injuring ten people.

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WBZ NewsRadio’s Shari Small (@ShariSmallNews) reports

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