NBC 4 New York
MTA officials announced a plan Sunday to provide additional service on the Metro-North New Haven line to accommodate about half its normal volume in time for the Monday morning rush after a Con Edison feed loader failed Wednesday, disrupting service for tens of thousands of commuters in New York and Connecticut. Brynn Gingras reports
MTA officials announced a plan Sunday to provide additional service on the Metro-North New Haven line to accommodate about half its normal volume in time for the Monday morning rush after a Con Edison feed loader failed Wednesday, disrupting service for tens of thousands of commuters in New York and Connecticut.
Officials said it will be the first time since the power failure that any electric trains have been able to run through the 8-mile section of track between Harrison and Mount Vernon. A temporary substation will provide limited electricity to power the trains. Other trains are running on diesel.
In addition, more than 8,000 park-and-ride spaces have been created in Westchester County and the Bronx so riders can reach other MTA services into Manhattan. New York City Transit officials have organized 72 shuttle buses.
Metro-North service advisories can be seen on the MTA's website.
Con Ed says it expects to restore full power by Oct. 8.
Amtrak announced separately that it would resume Acela Express service in a limited capacity between New York and Boston Monday following successful testing of a temporary repair to the electrical system that powers the Metro-North section of the Northeast Corridor.
On Sunday, New York Sen. Charles Schumer and Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal announced they sent a letter to officials at the Department of Energy and New York's Public Service Commission asking them to help restore power and figure out what caused the Wednesday power outage at the Metro-North substation.
The heavily used line between New York City's Grand Central Terminal and New Haven, Conn., is serviced by two high-voltage feeder cables. One of them was taken offline weeks ago as part of a previously scheduled upgrade. It is not known what caused the second feeder cable to fail.
"The Department of Energy needs to join up with the investigators at the Public Service Commission and utilize their expertise to figure out what exactly went wrong and why, and how it can be fixed," Schumer said.
A spokesman for the MTA, which oversees Metro-North, said in a statement that the agency is confident one normally functioning 138,000-volt cable could carry the full load of electricity needed while the other cable is being upgraded.
Con Edison, which supplies electricity to the line, said its focus is on restoring power to the tracks, adding it would work to determine the cause of the failure at the substation.
Still, said the senators, more needs to be done to ensure a similar outage isn't possible anywhere else.
"To grow jobs and strengthen our economy, safe and reliable rail service must be a top priority, and it is simply intolerable for a single cable failure to imperil that progress," Blumenthal said.