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Full Metro shutdown inspections found 27 power issues

Gates were closed at the McPherson Square Metrorail Station in Washington, Wednesday, March 16, 2016. The Metrorail system that serves the nation's capital and its Virginia and Maryland suburbs shut down for a full-day for an emergency safety inspection of its third-rail power cables. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

WASHINGTON — Metro found a total of 27 problems with power cables or connections during Wednesday’s shutdown, one more than the number announced at a Wednesday evening news conference.

Metro tells WTOP the additional issue found during the final inspections Wednesday night was with a power boot at Forest Glen.

All 27 issues, including the replacement of jumper cables that were so badly frayed trains should not have been running in three areas on the Blue, Orange and Silver line tracks downtown, were repaired before the system reopened to riders Thursday morning, a Metro spokesperson says.

The jumper cable problems were similar to those that are believed to have caused the deadly smoke incident near L’Enfant Plaza last year, and a fire that caused major disruptions to Monday morning’s commute.

The National Transportation Safety Board identified problems last year with seals meant to keep water and other debris out of many of the power boots which connect to the cables. Metro has been working on repairing them too.

While the rail system was closed, Metro says train operators reported to work for “support activities and training exercises.”

A Metro spokesperson did not have details on what that training included.

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