May 18, 2013
MTA Statement on Metro-North Derailment in Bridgeport, Connecticut
MTA Interim Executive Director Tom Prendergast and Metro-North President Howard Permut today again visited the scene of Friday’s evening’s derailment and subsequent sideswipe in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
The National Transportation Safety Board, with the full support and assistance of Metro-North Railroad, the MTA Police Department, Federal Railroad Administration, Connecticut DOT, and Bridgeport Police, is conducting an exhaustive investigation that will determine the cause of the incident.
The thoughts of entire MTA family are with those injured in this incident and their loved ones. We thank the first responders who assisted with safely removing the passengers from the trains and transporting those who were injured to area hospitals.
“We want our customers to know that while you travel on Metro-North, you can remain confident that your safety, and the safety of our employees, is always the first priority in everything we do,” said Howard Permut, President of MTA Metro-North Railroad.
Metro-North train service for Sunday, May 19, will be the same as it has been on Saturday, May 18. Service will remain suspended between South Norwalk and New Haven until further notice. Hourly service between South Norwalk Station and Grand Central Terminal will be provided. Regular service will operate between Stamford and Grand Central Terminal. Regular service will be in effect on the New Canaan and Danbury Branches. Bus service will be in effect between Waterbury and Bridgeport with no train connections.
There are four tracks in the segment of the New Haven Line where this incident took place. However, two of those tracks are out of service because of a long-term Connecticut Department of Transportation project to replace the overhead catenary wires that provide power to the trains. The other two tracks, as well as the overhead wires that serve them, received extensive damage as a result of the incident. Inspections and assessments are ongoing to determine the magnitude of that damage.
When the NTSB has concluded the on-site phase of its investigation, Metro-North will begin to remove the damaged rail cars and remaining debris. This process requires specialized, heavy equipment that will be in place by tomorrow. Only after the damaged train cars have been removed can Metro-North begin the work of rebuilding the damaged tracks and overhead wires. It is a significant undertaking that could take days to complete.
The NTSB has allowed Metro-North to begin to remove some of the damaged track and overhead wire from the scene.
We appreciate our customers’ patience as we work to rebuild the two tracks and restore train service. We estimate that this extensive effort will take well into next week.
Please continue to listen to the media and check mta.info/mnr for regular updates on service.