- (Photo: John Hendel)
People predicted the end of the world in 2012 but so far, the year has seemed relatively good — some cold temperatures here and there, sure, but this afternoon's gorgeous out, my cup of coffee here is terrific, and unemployment numbers dropped. The new year has proven to be absolutely terrible for one organization in D.C. in particular, however, and that's our local transit agency of WMATA.
Cracked rail, track defects, major SmarTrip confusion, a person struck last night, an unsettling suicide early this morning ...
... and then today another part of the brake that fell off a 2000-series Orange Line car. Luckily the agency didn't have to conduct any mass tunnel evacuations like the last time this happened in December (here's video of that chaos). WMATA appears to have been forthright enough about communicating all of these disasters, which is the one good sign.
Metro is now going to spend the weekend and early next weekend inspecting more than 40% of its aging fleet. 464 cars out of the 1,142. God save the transit riders. It's only been six days this year, and WMATA is short on luck (or something). Is Metro cursed? Let's hope this first week isn't an omen for the 51 weeks to come.