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Red Line Delays in Both Directions

Red Line commuters should expect "major delays" this morning due to a small fire that was reported at Metro Center station. Service on the Red Line was halted for about 20 minutes until the fire was extinguished, according to a Metro press release.

Free bus services will be available at the Farragut North, Gallery Place-Chinatown and Metro Center Stations.

Traffic alerts are also reporting delays around the Metro Center Station because of fire equipment vehicles. Drivers on F Street, 13th Street, 12th Street and G Street should expect delays.

By Washington Post Editors  |  August 14, 2008; 7:51 AM ET
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Thanks for the heads up!! Normally, the WMATA website says "oh, everything's fine!"

Posted by: Mr.ColdMiser | August 14, 2008 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Oh yes, everyone take mass transit! You have a 20% chance of being late to work on any given day.

Who would actually rely on this POS system to get them to a flight at Dulles on time?

Posted by: METRO strikes again! | August 14, 2008 8:46 AM | Report abuse

The delay rate is more like 5%. And yes, I'd much rather take my chances with WMATA getting me to Dulles than risk I-66.

Posted by: Thesmothete | August 14, 2008 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Riding transit gives you a "20% chance of being late to work"? I ride Metro everyday and it makes me late to work about once a year. How does that compare to driving?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

I understand and accept that Metro, like any underground rail transit system, will experience problems and service disruptions from time to time. What I don't get is why, when that happens, Metro doesn't just open the gates and let people leave without being charged. I was in the Van Ness station when it was announced that the delay could last up to an hour, so everyone on the train got up to exit the system, but of course, we all got charged on the way out. For those of us that began our trips at Van Ness (like me), that meant we were charged for Metro having provided zero service.

Posted by: $1.65 lighter and no travel to show for it | August 14, 2008 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Anyone know how long the delays are?

Posted by: Island 1 | August 14, 2008 8:58 AM | Report abuse

To the 8:53 am poster:

You're supposed to be able to exit the system through the non-fare gate without paying. Then, the next time you want to enter the system, tell the attendant that you left without paying due to an extended delay. Of course, this all assumes that (1) you can actually find the station attendant to adjust your farecard and (2) that they believe you.

Personally, I think I'd take my chances on the road when it comes to delays, because you can always bail out and take an alternate route. Can't do that when you're stuck in a tunnel on Metro, and unless you have Verizon, you can't even tell your boss you're going to be late.

Posted by: WashingtonDame | August 14, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

i really wish i knew how long the delays were gonna be. I don't have any other way to get to downtown, and i don't want to sit at an outside station for 90 minutes waiting.

Posted by: jared | August 14, 2008 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Now that you've made it to work, get to work!

Posted by: Me | August 14, 2008 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Glad I didn't get caught up in that!

Posted by: Metro Man | August 14, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Shady Grove was PACKED this morning. No seats available at all upon the train arriving.

Delays were negligible (8:15 departure got me to work with no delay)...

HOWEVER, the problem of only one up escalator at Dupont South operating has gotten worse. The line extended to the fare gates and many people were taking the stopped escalator up. It's been bad the last two weeks but today was reaching the danger threshold.

Posted by: Red Line Rider | August 14, 2008 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Oh really? Maybe you should research your facts first.

"On-time performance has been declining for the past 17 months; not once did the agency meet its performance benchmark of having 95 percent of all trains run on schedule. On-time performance was worst during the evening rush, when it hovered in the 80 percent range."

Posted by: @8:51 | August 14, 2008 10:13 AM | Report abuse

The good folks who work at Silver Spring Metro posted signs on the turnstiles this morning warning of major delays and advising riders to consider alternate transportation before we paid our fare. I got to the station just as the announcement came in for them to take the signs down, trains were getting back to normal. I'm so glad most of my colleagues are on the west coast -- I can come to work late and it's OK.

Posted by: silver lining | August 14, 2008 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Even if you can exit the non-fare gate, it's still unacceptable that the machines aren't programmed to cancel out fares if someone exits the same station as they entered within a certain period (say 20 minutes). How hard can that be, when the machines are programmed to avoid people using two tickets to enter/exit on the same ticket at the same station to avoid larger long-distance fares?

Posted by: ah | August 14, 2008 10:20 AM | Report abuse

What else is new on the Red Line? As a very frequent Metro rider, riding the Red Line is an adventure, especially on the weekends. I was forced to miss a memorial service last weekend due to track work which was supposed to be completed in the springtime and it took 4 weekends to complete. There are always delays on the Red Line and riding it is so bad that delays are a frequent occurence.

Posted by: David D | August 14, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Everyone is crying about one of best subways systems in the country. If you don't like it or it makes you late to work then get there some other way. My guess is your taking the metro because the other way is worse.

Posted by: Cry Babies | August 14, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Shady Grove was a mess. No announcements, no signage to indicate major delays. Imagine my surprise when I reached the platform to find a completely packed train AND a packed platform. After 10 minutes, in which 3 trains arrived and all went "out of service" and the packed train still had not left, I bailed and caught the MARC at Washington Grove.

And, of course, this will royally screw up my SmarTrip when I go home.

Things happen. But it would have been nice for Metro to inform us before going through the faregates that there was a major problem.

Posted by: Birdie | August 14, 2008 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Before leaving home, on WTOP I heard about the fire at Metro center. As I came in on the Orange Line though, no announcements were being made about the problems at Metro Center.

They did regularly tell us about a problem with an Orange Line train on the New Carrollton end.

Also, a co-worker stuck at Metro Center at the height of the problem related how they were given totally bad information by a kiosk attendant there.

If Metro can get the information out to the local news media, it's not unreasonable to think that they can get it to train operators and station managers, and that those people will pass it on to the riders.

It's hardly being a cry baby when there's a problem at the Heart of the system and Metro can't gets its staffs to disseminate correct information.

They've had 32 to years to work out the bugs.

Isn't it about time that they had a system in place for correctly distributing simple, but critical, information to their riders?

Posted by: NoVA | August 14, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse

METRO NEEDS TO ADD CARS to the Red Line to Takoma at evening rush.

OR, maybe all you people in Takoma could move soemwhere else

Posted by: Curly | August 14, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

They are working on developing an improved communication system. It is under study. It should be ready to be rolled out sometime between 2015 and 2020.

Much like their "customer service" department. 110 days and counting waiting for one reply... 75 days and counting on the follow-up...

Posted by: Metro Communications Department | August 14, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

The delay rate is more like 5%. And yes, I'd much rather take my chances with WMATA getting me to Dulles than risk I-66.

Posted by: Thesmothete | August 14, 2008 8:51 AM

Ahh, but would you trust WMATA over the Dulles Airport Access Road? Personally, I don't consider I-66 to be the preferred way to drive to IAD.

Posted by: Bob | August 14, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

that delay was longer than 20 minutes, what are they talking about?

to Cry Babies. I'm sure like most of the riders, I cant drive to work because I cant park here jackass. If I could I would. So shut your face

I did feel bad for the people coming from Shady Grove at least us coming from Glenmont had an alternate route through the green and yellow lines

Posted by: 20 minute? | August 14, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

I entered the metro system at 9:30 and had no problems. Ah, the joy of a flexible work schedule and paying non-rush hour fares.

Posted by: Laura | August 14, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

to Cry Babies. I'm sure like most of the riders, I cant drive to work because I cant park here jackass. If I could I would. So shut your face

Then find another job closer to where you live or move to another city. Either way , shut your face.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 15, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

If this is "one of best subways systems in the country" America is truly FUKCED.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 15, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

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