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Light Rail Operator Off The Job After Med Center Accident

Metro investigates two light rail accidents in two days.



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Metro has pulled a train operator off the job after a light rail accident Wednesday morning. The accident was the second in two days on the tracks in the Med Center.

In the latest incident, a train hit a vehicle that was stopped on the tracks while waiting to make a left turn. It happened at Fannin and Cambridge. Two people went to the hospital complaining of back pain.

Metro Chief Operating Officer Andy Skabowski says the accident was minor but they’re launching a full investigation.

“The train was pulled out of service so we can review the tape. We collected information from a number of different sources in the area, but some initial indications are indicating that that rail operator was, in this case, at fault.”

Skabowski says the train was creeping along at about five miles an hour but the operator is supposed to stop when they see a vehicle on the tracks. He says they’re still looking into what exactly happened.

“Well, until the investigation’s complete we’ve pulled the driver out of service, so she is not operating a train at this point.  We’ve suspended her with pay until we’ve completed our investigation.”

On Tuesday there was another light rail accident on Fannin near Dryden. No one was hurt.

Skabowski says despite the latest incidents, light rail has a good safety record. He says they’re also working with the city on signal light timing in the Med Center to help traffic flow more smoothly.

Metro light rail carries hundreds of passengers daily through the Texas Medical Center.


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Gail Delaughter

Gail Delaughter

News Anchor

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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