Something went bang at State Street; people fled Orange Line

State Street being evacuated

Orange Line riders after the boom. Photo by Chuck Giroux.

UPDATED with latest info from the T.

Around 8:50 a.m., an inbound Orange Line train pulled into State Street and there was a large "bang." Chuck Giroux photographed people rushing out of the station.

Although initial reports seemed to indicate the train had hit part of a fallen light fixture on the tracks, a T spokesman says the bang came from the subway equivalent of a shock absorber giving out:

An air bag blew. It was in the undercarriage of the train's 4th car. The air bags on subway cars are similar to shock absorbers on motor vehicles.

Kurt Salaman reports:

it was a very loud booming sound, but i think it was something with the train. We didn't stick around to find out though.

The T pulled the train out of service.

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Comments

Oh, you're right, man, does that bite

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I didn't go with a rhyme this time because the first few seconds sounded like it might be something a lot more serious than a mere dead train. Fortunately, it turned out to be not all that serious, if you discount the fact that it's kind of concerning that a light fixture just plummeted to the tracks and what that might say about the infrastructure at that station.

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I thought that might be the

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I thought that might be the reason for the lack of rhyme, but for what it's worth, I found myself mentally completing the headline with "toute suite".

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"Power Issue?"

The T is calling this a power issue... weird.

Orange Line: Moderate delays due to power issue at State.

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Power issue

They can't figure out who to blame and what department to saddle with the repair costs.

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I blame The George W. Bush

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I blame The George W. Bush for diverting federal public transportation funds from rail projects to Bus Rapid Transit.

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When that was issued

When that alert was issued, they were preparing to remove debris from the pit. Usually they would cut the power for having a bunch of people working in the track area. I imagine they had to briefly cut power before allowing them down there, so they billed it as a broad "power problem."

Also, "debris blocking service" isn't one of their default alerts. So, "power" or "police" it is, I guess?

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If whatever fell from the

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If whatever fell from the ceiling was metallic, and if it made contact with the third rail, then it may have caused a brief "out and back" short in the power section

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Latest update from the MBTA

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Just updated my post with a statement from the T: Wasn't a falling light fixture but an airbag blowing out on the bottom of one of the train cars.

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Blown air bag

You'll know if you ride a train with a blown air bag. You feel every little bump. The train will rattle incessantly and each switch you go over will rock the car. I believe that trains will a blown airbag are also legally limited to a reduced speed. Luckily it is nothing major, though.

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No, they just paint the car

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No, they just paint the car red and move it to the Braintree line.

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Ha!

Heh, I wouldn't be surprised. :P The only times I've experienced riding in a car with deflated airbags is on the Red Line.

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Yeah okay. No one "fled."

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Yeah okay. No one "fled." They decided to evacuate the station and told us to leave.

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