- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 16, 2022

Eight of the previously recalled 7000-series Metro train cars were back on D.C. Metro tracks Thursday, according to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.  

The decision to return the 7000-series trains to regular service comes after a federal investigation into a Metro train derailment near Arlington National Cemetery in October 2021 found a wheel defect in some of the trains. 

As a result, all 7000-series railcars were removed from service on all D.C, Metro lines, removing nearly 60% of Metro’s fleet. 

During the past few months, the older 6000-series trains have picked up the slack; though riders have endured longer wait times due to the sheer lack of trains. 

Metro, during this time, has increased the training of inspectors in an effort to prevent further derailments. 

D.C. Metro announced the plan to release the eight cars Wednesday.

The 7000-series trains are running on the Green Line, which travels from Suitland, Maryland to Greenbelt, Maryland, and the Yellow Line, which travels from Alexandria, Virginia, to Fort Totten in Washington, D.C. Metro says it has conducted extensive tests in the past month to make the addition of the 7000-series trains possible. 

Thursday’s introduction of the trains is the first step in a three-phase process that will see the addition of more of the 7000-series trains throughout the summer. 

Metro will regularly inspect the newly added trains under the approval of the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission. 

The trains will also be monitored using an automated process known as Automated Wayside Inspection System to eventually monitor wheel measurements on the whole fleet, pending approval from the WMSC.

Metro plans to increase the availability of the 7000-series trains on the Blue, Silver and Orange lines in July if inspectors see positive results. 

Correction: A previous version of this story misidentified the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.    

• Vaughn Cockayne can be reached at vcockayne@washingtontimes.com.

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