First rush hour experiences on Metro’s busiest line during SafeTrack Surge #10

WASHINGTON -- Monday marked the first rush hours at Fort Totten and NoMa-Galludet metro stations during SafeTrack Surge 10.  There was a lot of movement on the ground, with free shuttles, ride shares, bike riders and pedestrians, but on the tracks, most trains were at a standstill and the ones that were running, were standing room only.

“It was super crowded, it was so crowded that I had to wait for two trains to pass,” said Kenndra Powell, who relies on the redline to get to and from work.

During this extensive track work, no redline trains run between Fort Totten and NoMa Galludet.

The surge is expected to impact about 200 hundred thousand commuters, daily.

“With the redline being our busiest line, impacting Union Station, there are tens of thousands of people a day who understand what that means, we’ve been out here the last few days handing out leaflets so riders know what is coming,” said Metro General Manager Paul Wiedefeld at a press conference, Monday.

Surge 10 will last 25 days, some riders at Fort Totten told DCW50, their first rush hour experiences were frustrating, saying what is normally a 15 minute commute for some, took more than an hour.

Some commuters said they were going so far as to change their work schedules to avoid rush hour.

But those who are stuck with these hours found themselves trying to carpool or order an Uber or Lyft, alternatives that proved to be more expensive than normal.

“I just pulled it up on my phone so I can go home, I live close, in Takoma Park, but Lyft says there is a 25 percent surcharge, on top of the $11 dollars, that is just too much,” expressed Powell.

As redline riders ran to catch their designated shuttles, Monday evening, they were frustrated, but not defeated

“I just wish they had done it over summer break to cut down on some commuters who are now going to be a little lost,” said Catholic University student and redline commuter, Ashley Greif.

For more Safetrack information: http://www.wmata.com/rail/safetrack.cfm