NTSB releases findings on Metro derailment

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Picture Credit: Metro Police

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) presented its findings from their limited investigation of the July 29th derailment of a WMATA train on Wednesday.

The NTSB sent two investigators to the scene of the Orange Line train 602 derailment near East Falls Church, Virginia. Their goal was to assess the accident, as well as to determine whether a broader investigation of the incident was needed.

The derailment, which occurred on July 29th, occurred at an interlocking around 50 feet from the East Falls Church station platform. Nearly 75 passengers were evacuated from the train, and three injuries were reported. Service was suspended and resumed on Monday, August 1st.

The NTSB did not state the probable cause of the derailment. However, they did find that there was a 59 inch gage between the rails of the track in the location of the derailment. WMATA standards require a track gage greater 57-1/4 inches to be removed from service. According to the report, the investigators also noted a defective tie condition in the area of the accident. They found more than 30 feet of track with no effective crossties.

According to the report, WMATA will be taking several corrective actions after this investigation.