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Underground Metro runs until 3 a.m.

The transit authority says the rail system will continue to operate only underground service until 3 a.m. Sunday, the normal closing time. The trains will operate at about 30-minute intervals. No determination has been made about Sunday service.

Metro has 46 underground stations open; 40 stations are closed. Some stations opened late Saturday morning because Metro workers had difficulty reaching them, Metro said in a statement. Dozens of rail cars were stored in tunnels for the storm, but others lie covered in snow in rail yards and will have to be dug out before they can return to service.

"As road crews make progress on the region's streets, we will reevaluate driving conditions in hopes of resuming bus service. As our crews make progress keeping the above-ground rails snow- and ice-free, we will again start serving above-ground stations," Dave Kubicek, Metro's acting deputy general manager for operations, said in a statement. "For now, the responsible decision is to limit service until conditions are safe for our customers and employees."

Throughout the night, heavy diesel-powered trains will move back and forth along the tracks to remove ice. The electrified third rail must be clear of snow and ice to power the trains. Metro is also placing cables known as "heater tape" on the third rail in rail yards in an effort to prevent ice from forming, the statement said.
-- Ann Scott Tyson

By Robert Thomson  |  February 6, 2010; 12:58 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Metro , Weekend Work  
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