Metro GM, riders frustrated by train derailment near East Falls Church

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Falls Church, Va. -- You can add Metro General Manger Paul Wiedefeld to the list of people frustrated by a Friday morning derailment that brought train activity to a stop outside of the East Falls Church station.

The man in charge of Metro said the shutdown will extend into Saturday as well because they spent hours taking pictures and taking notes on the wreck before clean up was considered.

"We're going to find out what the root cause of this is and to do that we did not want to move any of the equipment until we have that investigation done," said Wiedefeld.

At this point, the GM said it's far too early to come up with a preliminary cause for the problem that sent two cars in the middle of an early morning train off the tracks just as the train was in the middle of a switch to get to the East Falls Station.

"Like everyone else we're frustrated," said Wiedefeld. "We want this thing fixed as quick as we can but this is something that was outside of the Safe Track work zone and it does reinforce that we have to continue this constant effort to maintain this system-- get it back up to the level we all want."

The investigation and cleanup meant many people in Northern Virginia had to use shuttles between key stops like Ballston and West Falls Church.

"This is like an hour some ride and then I get to the last stop I need and then it's like or you got to shuttle this and then take another shuttle," said Chase Smith, who was not confident he would make it in time for the start of an internship.

Wiedefeld said he knows there are tens of thousands of other everyday riders who are waiting for answers about what went wrong Friday morning and when the service will be restored.

"Safety has to trump service and this is where it starts," said Wiedefeld.

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