Event Review on WMATA White Flint Platform Overrun on May 11, 2016 (16-0144)

Event Summary

Event Location: WMATA White Flint Station on Red Line

Event Date: Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Active Event Timeframe: 1:03 PM EDT

Event Category: Station Overrun & Door Operation outside Station Limits

On Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at about 1:03 PM EDT, inbound WMATA Red Line Train 106 overran the station platform at White Flint station while operating in manual mode of operation resulting in at least one set of train doors being opened outside the platform limits (see Figure 1).

At about 1:03PM, Red Line Train 106, while operated in manual mode, failed to properly stop at White Flint station and proceeded past the station. The train operator contacted the Rail Operations Control Center (ROCC) to report the overrun as required under WMATA procedures. The operator reported two doors were off the platform, and the ROCC Controller instructed the train operator to disable the doors in the operating car – Breda car 3227 – and service the station from the remaining cars. However, witnesses and photographs indicate that at least 1 set of doors (doors 5/6) on the second car 3226 opened beyond the platform limits against the safety railing for the catwalk leading from the platform.

Figure 1: Photograph captured at approximately 1:05PM from a passenger in the second car of Train 106 showing doors 5/6 open facing the safety railing beyond the platform limits. (Image: Twitter/Laura M)

This identifies a serious safety lapse; the train operator reported two doors off the platform which would indicate an overrun of approximately forty feet, while the photograph indicates the overrun met or exceeded one hundred feet, or over twice what was reported. Had the correct information been relayed to the ROCC controller, the controller should have instructed the operator not to service White Flint and to continue on to Grosvenor station.

Rail Transit OPS Group is an independent group that monitors rail transit operations, performance, and safety procedures to proactively address potential issues We can be found at railtransitops.org as well as on Facebook and Twitter