Photo by PoPville flickr user pablo.raw
“Metro is advising riders on the Blue and Yellow lines of the possibility of 20 to 30 minute delays during the morning commute due to a broken rail between Braddock Road and Reagan National Airport stations.
The broken rail, located south of the airport, will require that crews install a new 39-foot section of rail. Blue and Yellow line trains will single track between Braddock Road and Reagan National Airport stations until repairs are completed.
Broken rails (also known as “cracked” rails) can be caused by sharp changes in temperature as a result of the expansion of metal in heat and contraction in cold. A rapid change from expansion to contraction can cause the steel rails to develop breaks that must be repaired before trains can safely pass the area. Most rail breaks are detected automatically by Metro’s signal system.
Reagan National Airport has seen a 50-degree swing in temperatures over recent days, from a high of 59 degrees on Monday to a low of 9 degrees on Wednesday.”
UPDATE: “As of 8 a.m., Metro personnel have completed repairs to the broken rail south of Reagan National Airport. Trains are no longer single tracking. Riders can expect minor residual delays as service returns to normal.”
Update: @wowindc tweets us the scene at Gallery Place around 8:45am: