Fires and Electric Problems Plague Washington Metro By Ben Schumin (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Fires and Electric Problems Plague Washington Metro

The fire on Wednesday morning, April 27, caused tunnels to fill with smoke at the Friendship Heights station.

The Washington Metro says a station in northwest Washington has been shut down after an electrical fire on the tracks. The fire on Wednesday morning, April 27, caused tunnels to fill with smoke at the Friendship Heights station.

According to an Associated Press report, that is the same spot where another fire occurred the previous Saturday. Metro reported that Saturday's fire was caused by a foreign object that came into contact with the electrified third rail.

Metro said the April 27 fire was caused by a problem with the power cables. Faulty power cables have been blamed for several fires over the last two years, including one in January 2015 that killed one passenger and sickened more than 80 others.

Now this week on Thursday, May 5, the Washington Metro evacuated and closed two busy downtown stations after reports of smoke triggered a massive fire-department response to Federal Center SW along the Blue, Orange and Silver lines.

A local Washington radio station, WAMU, reported that the D.C. Fire Department investigated what it believed was smoke coming from an arcing insulator at Federal Center, but general manager Paul Wiedefeld, in an interview with NBC4, said it was a debris fire. At the same station Thursday morning, Metro surveillance video captured an apparent explosion from an arcing insulator.

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