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Forget Snowmageddon, This Is Metromageddon

Farragut North station after a train derailed. Credit: http://twitpic.com/12smef

Could anything else go wrong on outgoing Metro General Manager John Catoe’s watch? Catoe leaves office on April 2, which may be time enough for Metro to have another major, every-one’s-commute-affected catastrophe.

Huge lines at Metro station. Credit: http://twitpic.com/12rvdy

Today started out with Metrorail only serving the closer-to-the-city stations, leaving those in the outer suburbs to fend for themselves. Many people chose to drive, causing highways to turn into parking lots.

Then, in many cases, Metro only ran the trains every 30-45 minutes, causing huge lines to form at stations. At one point, according to several accounts, access to the Ballston Metro station was cut off due to too many people waiting for trains. Massive queues were also reported at the Pentagon City Metro station.

Finally, although this was beyond Metro’s control, a train derailed at the Farragut North station, causing already-bad delays on the Red Line to become nightmarish. Luckily, there were only a few very minor injuries.

The derailed train has been cleared and the stationed has reopened, Metro says, but the delays continue.

“Trains will be restricted to a speed of 25 mph between Dupont Circle and Farragut North Metrorail stations while Metro officials investigate the incident,” Metro said in a statement.

Metro says 345 people were on board the derailed six-car train, which should give you a sense of just how full trains are running today.

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