Normal service set to resume Friday amid ongoing investigation into Blue Line derailment

Normal service on Metrorail’s Blue, Orange and Silver lines are set to resume Friday, after two days of disruption following an investigation into a derailment that left hundreds of riders stranded.

The search for answers is just beginning after a train derailed Tuesday during the afternoon rush hour, but a safety officer with the transit agency provided an update Thursday, sharing information about the current state of the investigation.

“Metro’s subject matter experts have been on the scene with the NTSB,” said Metro Chief Safety Officer Theresa Impastato, referring to the National Transportation Safety Board.

The NTSB has taken the lead in investigating why the train went off the tracks.

According to Impastato, one set of wheels on a train car left the tracks about 2,000 feet from the Arlington Cemetery station during the afternoon rush on Tuesday.

“The train remained upright with all cars in-line,” Impastato said. “No injuries were reported and one customer was transported from the scene for a precautionary medical evaluation.”

There were 187 passengers on board the train.

Arlington County’s fire department helped get them off the train safely and over to the Arlington Cemetery station.

“The investigation is in the on-site fact finding and data collection phase which we anticipate will continue throughout the week,” Impastato said.

As a result of the investigation, riders continued to endure service disruptions on Metro’s Blue Line Thursday. Although normal service is scheduled to resume on Friday, intermittent delays are possible, Metro said in a news release.

On Thursday, Metro Board of Directors Chairman Paul C. Smedberg released the following statement:

Metro’s Board of Directors is closely monitoring this week’s investigation of the Blue Line derailment. We are respecting the NTSB investigation process and understand our riders, stakeholders and the public want answers that will come from a full and thorough examination of the incident. We appreciate your patience through this process and await the NTSB’s determination on the cause and any early action items that will inform the Board in our oversight role of Metro.

Nick Iannelli

Nick Iannelli can be heard covering developing and breaking news stories on WTOP.

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