Storm damage closes section of light rail

September 24, 1994|By Peter Jensen | Peter Jensen,Sun Staff Writer

Mass Transit Administration officials blamed high winds and freakish circumstances for damaging overhead power lines and shutting down service on the southern leg of the Central Light Rail Line yesterday and today.

Service from Camden Yards to Cromwell Station in Glen Burnie is not expected to be restored until 11 a.m. tomorrow.

During Thursday's storm, a piece of a crossing gate at the entrance to C. M. Kemp Manufacturing Co. in Glen Burnie broke off and slammed into the pantograph of a northbound train about 9:30 p.m.

The operator was unaware of what had happened and continued running the train. The battered pantograph ripped up 150 feet of catenary and supporting structures near Cherry Hill and again near North Avenue, said Dianna Rosborough, an MTA spokeswoman.

The damage was discovered late Thursday, and crews repaired the North Avenue catenary early yesterday morning. More severe damage to the catenary in Cherry Hill forced the MTA to shut down power to all tracks south of Camden Yards so crews could work on the lines yesterday and today.

Buses at the light rail stations provided transportation for the estimated 4,500 commuters affected by the shutdown yesterday. The buses will be available again today.

The total cost of the damage was estimated at $12,700.

Service between North Avenue and Timonium also was halted because of equipment problems for 11 hours Thursday.

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