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Smoke at Ballston Metro Temporarily Shuts Station

by Katie Pyzyk — January 22, 2013 at 4:45 pm 929 14 Comments

Smoke from Ballston Metro grate (photo courtesy @CAPT258)(Updated at 4:50 p.m.) The Ballston Metro station has reopened after temporarily closing due to smoke. However, Metro now confirms there was no fire inside the station.

A tipster sent a photo showing smoke flowing from the grate over Metro at Fairfax Drive and N. Utah Street.

According to Metro’s Twitter activity, debris inside a vent shaft began smoldering but there was no fire inside the station. The Arlington County Fire Department confirmed the smoke came from leaves that had ignited in a ventilation grate. Capt. Gregg Karl said that sometimes occurs if a passerby tosses a cigarette through the grates and debris below ignites.

The trouble started just before 4:00 p.m., and for about 15 minutes trains skipped the Ballston station while the smoldering debris was extinguished. Metro spokesman Dan Stessel said the brief incident affected two trains in each direction. Fans were brought in to clear the smoke and trains are again running on a normal schedule.

Photo courtesy @CAPT258

  • KalashniKEV

    Did FireBum Leon get out already?

    • HJ

      Bum round-up, right?

  • spaghetti

    I would love it if smoking was banned in public (outside or in)…

  • CrystalMikey

    Insert generalized rant about smokers and their littering issue.

    • Keith

      Smokers need to stop treating public areas like their own cinder-bloc and broken big-wheel-strewn crabgrass infested front yards. How’s that for “general?” But more importantly, why isn’t WMATA CLEANING THE DETRITUS from these open access vents?

  • Ben

    Looks like Smoker Steve strikes again

    • ARL-VA

      But, but he said that there’s nothing wrong with smokers, that they are the most respectful people. They never litter and toss their cigarette butts on sidewalks or in bushes or out car windows or into trash cans containing paper. Never ever.

  • Dude Where’s My Car

    [sniff] Did Carpool just throw another batch of ribs on?

  • Curious George

    Is it really possible for an object to ignite without any form of a fire occurring?

    • reading comprehension fail

      No fire INSIDE the station – it was in the vent.

  • Curious George

    I went to public school. What do you expect

  • Ralph

    Sorry, it didn’t work.

  • YTK

    SNUFF YOUR CIGGIE BUTTS and toss them in the proper receptacle PLEASE.

    Is that what also caused the brushfire near I-66???

    • Oracle II

      Probably

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