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Metro Transit Police investigating incident at Gallery Place

Metro Transit Police are investigating Monday's incident at Gallery Place-Chinatown Station on the Red Line.

In a press release, the transit agency said a preliminary report indicates a young man was pushed into the side of a train bound for Shady Grove that was stopped at the station. The initial investigation indicates that the incident occurred during an altercation, the statement said. The minor fell to the platform, was treated at the scene by emergency personnelm and was transported to a nearby hospital.

Metro said the train was held at the station for 45 minutes, causing delays. Normal service has resumed, but residual delays continue, Metro said.

By Michael Bolden  |  November 30, 2009; 4:42 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Commuting , Metro  | Tags: Metro, Red Line  
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Why did Metro hold a train in place for 45 minutes because someone bumped into the side of it? This happens every day with door climbers.

Posted by: member5 | November 30, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

I write to alert people to the location of another fatality-in-the-making: the customer crush at the ends of the Gallery Place Metro Red Line platforms. It is just a matter of time before a customer is accidentally jostled onto the tracks and into the path of an oncoming train.
Here are the reasons for the problem, as any rush-hour visitor can easily confirm. First, it was a colossal error not to have built wide platforms at the Gallery Place Red Line, like those in place at Metro Center and L’Enfant Plaza, the other two big downtown transfer stations. Thus, Gallery Place has a crush of customers attempting to transfer from one level to another on narrow platforms. Second, the crush is exacerbated by the fact that all transferors must walk to and from a single end of the Red Line platforms. The result is that as each Red Line train leaves Gallery Place, a large herd of transferring customers attempt to reach a single end of the platform to go downstairs, often as another herd of customers arrives from downstairs and attempts to enter the Red Line platform. These two groups –in effect two herds of 100 or more people each, with a vanguard of of 6 or 8 people abreast – in effect bump into each other at the end of platform that is only about 15 feet wide. (See handwritten diagram below.) This creates a chaos of bumping and shoving. It is just a matter of time before someone is accidentally jostled onto the tracks.
A partial solution would be to “shave off” the sharp corners of the walls at the ends of Red Line platform, to widen the location of the point at which the herds meet and to somewhat ease the crush. I know that this might costs millions of dollars of work. But it would be worth the cost to decrease somewhat the chances of death at the Gallery Place Red Line platforms.

Posted by: boudx | November 30, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

Might I suggest more supervision in this station as well. At 3:30, when all of the students are out, it is a fight for your life to get to the trains. The fighting and horseplay is just the least of our problems. Knife fights are soon to come.

Posted by: nordygirl30 | December 1, 2009 7:24 AM | Report abuse

I too do not undestand why a train was delayed for 45 minutes because someone was pushed into it.
However, my bigger issue is announcing that delays woud be over an hour and last all of rush hour and customers should avoid the red line. I left my office at 4:40 when this was the announcement and got on my bus to DuPont Circle (20 minute ride); however, I stayed on it to K street to transfer to the Circulator to Union Station.
Had I known the problem was clearled up at 4:40 I could have gotten off at DuPont Circle (at 5 pm) and made my 5:20 express train to BWI, instead I got home over an hour later.
Why can't metro communicate to bus drivers when metro problems are cleared and ask them to announce it to passengers. Simple communication like this would have saved me an hour of commuting time and a lot of hassle.

Posted by: GlenBurnie | December 1, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

GlenBurnie, there were still delays at that time with very crowded trains. You probably made the right choice by just sticking with the buses. Let's say you had chanced it and decided to take metro. I'm guessing you still would have missed your express train, and would be blaming metro for saying that service had returned to normal when it really hadn't. I always think of it as residual delays continue=add 20 minutes to the commute. With metro it seems like it's often a damned if you do, damned if you don't type of situation.

If you have a web enabled phone, you can go to and see when the next trains are leaving your desired station. It won't tell you if the trains are overcrowded and if you have to wait for the next train or 4, but you can get an idea of if the trains are running on a normal schedule.

Posted by: UMDTerpsGirl | December 1, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

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