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No Metrorail Today in Washington, D.C.
D.C. Metro officials took surprising, drastic measures today, announcing the systemwide closure of the Metrorail system today, March 16, 2016.
The announcement came only the day before the sudden closure, announced by Metro General Manager and CEO Paul J. Wiedefeld, with support from the Authority's Board of Directors. According to the press release announcing the closure,
The inspections of approximately 600 "jumper cables" will occur along all tunnel segments on the Metrorail system. At the conclusion of the inspection process, there may be a need for additional rail service outages. Any further service impacts will be announced to the public as soon as they are known.
The press release also notes that the Metro bus system would still be in operation, and provided link to the variety of bus services available in the Metrorail service area.
Unsurprisingly, the announcement produced no small amount of shock and news coverage. Here's a sample of coverage—varying from hard news coverage of the coverage, to the responses of lawmakers at the state and federal levels, and the impact of the closure on the commute around the nation's capital:
- Robert McCartney and Lori Aratani report on the safety concerns that inspired the closure.
- Mike DeBonis reports the initial responses of lawmakers to the surprising development.
- T. Rees Shapiro, Mike DeBonis, and Emma Brown report on the impacts of the closure on the many varieties of commutes that take place in the D.C. region.
- Luz Lazo provides a list of alternative transportation options—from Metrobus to Taxis to Capital Bikeshare. The only mode lacking in the article is the original form of transportation—walking.
- WTOP staff reported that federal employees would spend the day telecommuting or taking leave as a result of the closure.
- Recommended reading for satirical relief from the whole messed up situation: the @unsuckdcmetro Twitter feed.