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Metro Prepares for Saturday Storm

The transit authority, like many of our other transportation systems, is announcing preparations for dealing with Tropical Storm Hannah when it reaches the Washington area on Saturday.

Flooding is the issue for public transit as well as for the highway departments. The third rail can't supply power to the trains if water reaches the rail's level. And of course, Metrobuses and MetroAccess vehicles depend on passable streets.

Metro workers have placed more than 2,500 sand bags at stations with a history of flooding: Cleveland Park, King Street, Southern Avenue, Navy Yard, Federal Triangle, Stadium-Armory, Foggy Bottom-GWU and Largo. The transit authority says Smithsonian also has sometimes had water run off from the National Mall into the station through vent shafts. Crews also are checking the drains in the stations and the yards.

Metrobus street supervisors will be watching for drainage problems so they can alert the operations center. The buses and MetroAccess vehicles might need to detour to avoid downed trees and flooded streets.

Metro policy says that if we get sustained winds of 40 mph or greater, rail, bus and paratransit service could be suspended. But the transit authority notes that in its 32-year history, service was suspended only once because of high winds. That was for Hurricane Isabel in September 2003.

Practical note: Keep away from the edge of the curb near bus stops and from the edge of the rail station platforms during the wind and rain.

By Robert Thomson  |  September 5, 2008; 11:43 AM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Weather  
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Did the track work between Reagan and Braddock Road fail? Trains are now stopping multiple lurchy times in the middle instead of just once.

Posted by: wtf | September 5, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

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