May 27, 2024

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WMATA to Fix All 7000-Series Car Wheels. Price tag: $55MM

WMATA to Fix All 7000-Series Car Wheels. Price tag: $55MM


Written by

Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
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WMATA 7000-Series Rapid Transit Cars: Courtesy Wikipedia

WMATA 7000-Sequence Rapid Transit Cars: Courtesy Wikipedia

The Washington Metropolitan Spot Transit Authority (WMATA) on Feb. 28 reported that its strategy to transform the way it presses wheels on the 7000-series rapid transit cars is less than development, based mostly on technical information issued the exact day by the Nationwide Transportation Protection Board (NTSB). The protection transfer could cost approximately $55 million and acquire up to three a long time to entire, the Authority reported.

The NTSB on Feb. 28 released the details as aspect of the community docket* for its ongoing investigation into the Oct. 12, 2021 derailment of a WMATA teach in Arlington, Va. A person wheelset on auto 7200, the fourth of 8 on coach 407, derailed (see map underneath). Shortly thereafter, the wheelset was found to be out of compliance with 7000-sequence cars’ requirements, primary WMATA to sideline all 748 of its cars in the series—built by Kawasaki Rail and symbolizing almost 60{7b5a5d0e414f5ae9befbbfe0565391237b22ed5a572478ce6579290fab1e7f91} of its fleet.

(Map Courtesy of NTSB)

In December 2021, the NTSB issued a protection notify calling on rail transit agencies and commuter railroads to verify their fleets for “wheelsets that do not meet up with gage technical specs.” The NTSB discovered a wheelset movement issue for the duration of its WMATA derailment investigation. Wheels on specified WMATA railcars “moved outward from their mounted position on the axle,” it claimed.

​​​This photograph displays the guide axle at the ultimate derailment website in the tunnel. (Caption Courtesy of NTSB Photograph courtesy of WMATA​​)

NTSB Docket Release Provides Road Map to 7000-Sequence Fleet Restoration

“We take pleasure in the NTSB creating the technical reviews out there so that we can create our program to start off repressing wheels on these trains at a better typical, together with the match onto the axles,” WMATA Main Operations Officer Brian Dwyer stated. “We are planning the technical files and instruction program, whilst we collaboratively advance the up coming edition of our [7000-series cars’] return to provider approach for approval by the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission.”

WMATA has been little by little reinstating its 7000-collection cars, by next Washington Metrorail Security Commission-authorized inspection protocols.

WMATA claimed the NTSB’s investigation docket release would make it achievable for the Authority “to transparently operate towards addressing the cause of the wheel movement” with a revised return to service program. Although a lead to of the wheel movement has not been “formally announced” by the NTSB, between the 1,400 web pages of factual data launched in the community docket was a report from gurus at engineering agency Hatch-LTK, “which determined a technological issue—microslip due to reduction in get hold of tension,” according to WMATA. The Authority reported that its “internal and external engineering professionals agree that an raise to the fit and push tonnage employed to mount rail wheels on to axles is needed for the 7Ks [7000-series cars]. As a preliminary estimate, it will get up to 36 months at a value of about $55 million to repress all 7K wheels.” The 748 railcars comprise 5,984 wheels on 2992 axles, the Authority claimed.

“We thank our customers for their patience and want them to know that the good news is we will be in a position to deal with about 20 vehicles a month to safely create up a lot more trains and restore the harmless, regular and responsible assistance the area demands,” Dwyer claimed.

WMATA noted that it will proceed its “rigorous inspections of wheels with measurements for every 7000-sequence railcar [in service] until finally its wheels are reassembled at the new, better normal.”

“Process modifications will have to be risk-free and deliberate,” WMATA Chief of Basic safety and Readiness Theresa Impastato reported. “We will take the time desired to get this right since each individual solitary railcar will have to go through a demanding system to be prepared to serve our buyers and help our workers.”

* The NTSB docket consists of experiences on operations, mechanical, keep track of and engineering, signal and coach handle, car or truck occasion recorders, supplies lab, and human effectiveness. It also consists of job interview transcripts, photos and other investigative materials. “The docket is made up of only factual information and facts collected by NTSB investigators it does not present the closing report or a possible cause” on the WMATA derailment, in accordance to the NTSB. A final report will be issued at a afterwards date and will contain “analysis, findings, recommendations, and possible trigger determinations connected to the derailment,” the NTSB reported.