Train use down today; Metro-North tracks being repaired

Damage shows how an oncoming train scraped against one car before tearing into the next when an eastbound train derailed near the Bridgeport-Fairfield line Friday, May 17. The last of the damaged cars were removed Sunday, May 19. (John Kovach Photo)

Damage shows how an oncoming train scraped against one car before tearing into the next when an eastbound train derailed near the Bridgeport-Fairfield line Friday, May 17. The last of the damaged cars were removed Sunday, May 19. (John Kovach Photo)

Weston First Selectman Gayle Weinstein said she participated in a conference call with Gov. Dannel Malloy this morning and received updates on the Monday morning commuting situation. A train crash in Fairfield on Friday night has left a section of the Metro-North New Haven line closed.

The governor said in the conference call that train usage is down 81% today, although traffic patterns remain normal.

So far, one track has been restored, and work has been started on the second that was damaged when one train derailed and was struck by another traveling in the opposite direction.

Due to an expected increase in automobile traffic, both tree cutting and construction on the Merritt Parkway have been suspended.

The crash and resulting damage has forced the use of shuttle buses around the damaged track. Up to date commuter information may be found at mta.info.

The state Emergency Operations Center (EOC) will be open today until 8 p.m.

Mr. Malloy said he does not yet have official cost estimates, although  three rail cars have been lost. Those cars will potentially be salvaged for useable parts. Both trains involved were the new M8 cars that went into service in March 2011.

There were upwards of 70 injuries, some critical, as a result of Friday’s accident. There were no fatalities.

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