Red Line service shut in South Boston after train, track fail in a blast of sparks, glass shards at Andrew

Andrew Square smoke

Seth Hardy was at Andrew when the inbound train had a serious meltdown shortly before 9:30 a.m. Kyle Thomas, who was on the train, writes:

The MBTA says there are "severe" delays on the Red Line due to what it calls a track problem at Andrew and is running buses between Broadway and JFK/UMass.

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Pollack has to go

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And I don't mean go to the bathroom. I don't care how much money her husband gives to the GOP. This insanity has to end

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Don't forget the harsh spring

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Don't forget the harsh spring. It's not like these trains can stand 40-70°F either.

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My guess

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Sounds like from the description, the track had a buckle in it (likely rapid temperature change related) and that flexed the car enough to stress the window into breaking.

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Globe reports the problem started on the train

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When a motor failed.

And maybe fell off? Can that even happen? Because the bumping and window shattering sounds like more severe than what you'd get with a motor just stopping, but what do I know?

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It may have thrown things

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Any rapidly spinning mechanical thingy can hurl things if it brakes. Doesn't have to be a jet engine.

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The motor dropping can cause

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The motor dropping can cause the train to derail, which then results in the car hitting the side of the platform

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I was riding the T from

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I was riding the T from alewife to central around 5pm last night and at one point I felt an abrupt violent wobble that for a brief moment felt like the train had lost control. There were some more typical bumps/sensations later in the ride but that first one was not typical.

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"Motor failed"

As relayed by T spokesperson to the Globe, who added that the track infrastructure is being inspected.

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Not on your life

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my (squints eyes at user name) WASPy friend?

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Nope

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Euro-mutt, leaning slightly Italian. In both ethnicity and choice of salad dressing.

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Track bend is possible

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Bending of tracks can happen in some limited instances. Too much speed on a curve can cause a track to bend outward and away in the direction fo the curve. It is often referred-to as "nosing" (nose -- ing), and there is a slight curve and switch just south of the station platform at Andrew.

That said, nosing often happens at the heavier locomotive end where stresses are greater but the Red Line does not have that.

Bends can happen when tracks contract or expand too much due to sudden changes in temperature. When it gets too hot in the summer it is possible for trains to operate at reduced speeds. That said, that is usually restricted to tracks that are exposed to outdoor heat and sun and less likely for tracks underground where temperature variances are less dramatic.

This is the same expansion and contraction that causes heating systems to creak and groan in winter, or cause water pipes to break.

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o_O

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. o O (And they want us to pay more for such service next year) O o .

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No keeping up with inflation

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No keeping up with inflation until service reaches some vague level of goodness!

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Open letter to Marge and Jim, Boston Public Radio

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I just sent this to Boston Public Radio. Wouldn't they be good at this?

Dear Marge and Jim,

We, the citizens of Boston, need someone to be the ongoing advocate about the T, to Charlie Baker and others. I mean non-stop, ongoing, not sporadic.

Million dollar Charlie Card upgrade when the Red Line is exploding windows and generally not World Class City reliable? Outrage!

I mean ongoing advocate such as, you do a count every day for 1 minute, how many breakdowns in Boston that day (and versus say... philly? i don't know if there is some place to compare it to.)

Even just "here's the M&J T One- Second Update: yesterday, 2 break downs on Green Line, 6 over ten-minute delays on Red". Doesn't that sound excellent?

And push Baker every time he comes in. And Walsh to push Baker. And call the legislature for comment. etc.

WE NEED YOU.

Sincerely,

Dorchester resident who is also having breakdowns

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No

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He would focus his outrage on a single, not-necessarily-outrageous point. On serious matters, she would just giggle.

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I second the BPR idea

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As a frequent BPR listener I think this is a wonderful idea.

I can't understand how Charlie Baker is getting away with "fixing the T" when the service is terrible. We have so many delays and breakdowns, and often in the morning the trains are already so packed that I have to wait for a few to go by. The buses in my neighborhood are even worse. I'm not a total anti-Baker guy, I just want him to fix the damn trains like he said he would.

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Relief is actually coming (eventually)

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While it is undeniable that the current state of the MBTA sucks (especially on the Red line) and will for at least the next few years, new trains are coming. I don't have any particular love for Baker, but it's not his fault that no one on Beacon Hill wanted to replace the trains when they should have 15-20 years ago. I know it's easy for me to say "the contract is signed. The factory is built. The first new red line train should be there sometime next year. You just have to wait 5 more years for all the old trains to be replaced," when I don't have to deal with commuting by T, but the contract is signed. The factory is built. The first new red line train should be there sometime next year. You just have to wait 5 more years for all the old trains to be replaced.

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I spoke too soon

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I was wrong about one thing. As was pointed out in the Afternoon thread, Baker was one of the major drivers (during Weld and Cellucci, not Romney) of pushing the Big Dig debt onto the MBTA. So it is, at least partly, his fault no one fixed these problems 15-20 years ago.

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Time to use Uber. Oh wait,

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Time to use Uber. Oh wait, Uber and Lyft are a no no according to many of you who fell for that sham study about traffic from Uber.

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Has anyone looked into class action suit against the T or Baker?

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Has anyone looked into class action suit against the T or Baker?
I'm not even that angry, or litigious, I just think nothing is going to get done until it costs someone some personal money. Or agency money.
Any lawyers? The suit would claim damages, for things like all the times we took Lyft to work. And lost wages.
BPR could ask the AG perhaps.
And also, who can we call to complain about the new Charlie system versus fixing the train tracks.. is that the T Board, and is it completely independent or does Charlie (Baker) have power?
And who appoints the board. maybe should be elected.

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Yes

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Perhaps legal action will compel the Commonwealth to buy new trains for the Red Line.

I mean, how else could they be convinced to do that?

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Aim higher

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How about a class action suit against the MA state legislature for codifying the rules that made it so damn hard to impose any adult supervision on the T cash handling and parts warehouse operations?

How about a class action suit against Deval Patrick and Bev Scott who appointed her?

How about against whoever the hell it was (Somethingsomething Conservancy?) that kept hammering on the GLX thereby diverting agency resources and management attention away from maintenance and on the new shiny?

Getting a little ridiculous? That's because lawsuits aren't how accountable government is supposed to work, the ballot box is. If the T is that important to you, vote out your state rep and state senator if you don't think they're serious about addressing the T's reliability. You can try to vote out Baker too over it (like y'all need a reason), but Mass is a weak-governor state. The rubber meets the road in the Great and General Court, not the corner office.

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The Conservation Law

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The Conservation Law Foundation seems to like to go after the state regarding public transit, at least when it can be framed as an environmentalism issue.

http://www.clf.org/

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MBTA Conservancy?

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Maybe we should start a MBTA advocacy group, dedicated to hammering the city & state for funding and support. I don't know if anything like that exists, but it seems like it there would be a lot of interest from the city!

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You guys just take it. You

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You guys just take it. You take the poor service, the rude employees, the high price, and nothing changes. Pathetic.

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I'm all ears!

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And what have you done this week to get better T service?

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Shards of glass?

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Aren't all the windows plastic?

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