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NEWS
July 7, 2016 | By Jason Laughlin and Justine McDaniel, STAFF WRITERS
Jammed platforms. Brutal delays. Passengers left stranded as packed-to-capacity trains sped past. And, because some people were likely off Tuesday for the holiday, things will probably get worse, especially for riders from inner-ring suburbs who will have to contend with the most crowded trains. "It could be a little worse tomorrow," said Jeff Knueppel, SEPTA's general manager, during a news conference Tuesday. "I wish I didn't feel that way but I've got to say it. " And the problems could last all summer, officials said, because they don't know whether a temporary weld can get the trains back in service until new beams are installed.
NEWS
July 7, 2016 | By Tom Avril, Staff Writer
SEPTA's Silverliner V cars were sidelined by a problem that has dogged mechanical engineers for as long as they have worked with metal: fatigue. That is the term for microscopic cracks that can develop with repeated back-and-forth loading, which happens as trains move from one section of track to the next. If allowed to spread, such cracks can eventually lead to failure, as when you bend a paper clip enough times that it breaks. Most of the SEPTA cars were pulled out of service before that happened, but in one car the crack had propagated through a 9-foot beam called an equalizer, agency engineers said Tuesday.
NEWS
July 6, 2016 | By Steve Bohnel and Jason Laughlin, STAFF WRITERS
With structural failures found in one-third of its train fleet, SEPTA officials announced Monday that the Regional Rail lines would be running on a modified Saturday schedule during the workweek and urged Regional Rail riders to shop for other ways of getting around. Repairs could take the rest of the summer, but riders who account for 150,000 trips on Regional Rail each day likely face crowded trains and big delays. Depending on the line, said Ron Hopkins, SEPTA's assistant general manager, capacity could drop as much as 50 percent.
NEWS
July 5, 2016 | By Jason Laughlin, Staff Writer
Structural failures found in a third of SEPTA's train fleet are forcing more than 100 cars off the tracks indefinitely. Fixes could take the rest of the summer, but riders who account for 150,000 trips on Regional Rail each day will likely face crowded trains and big delays. "Unfortunately, it will be rough on our railroad customers," said Jeff Knueppel, SEPTA's general manager. The flaw, a crack in a weight-bearing beam on a train car's undercarriage, has shown up in almost all of SEPTA's Silverliner V's, the newest trains in its Regional Rail fleet.
NEWS
July 4, 2016
A 71-year-old man who was running to catch a SEPTA bus in West Philadelphia on Saturday died after he got caught on a rear tire and was pulled under the bus, Philadelphia police said. The accident happened about 2:30 p.m. as the man was trying to catch the Route 15 bus at Belmont and Girard Avenues, police said. The man, whose name was not released, was pronounced dead by medics at the scene at 2:40 p.m. - Julie Shaw
NEWS
July 4, 2016 | By Chris Mondics, Staff Writer
SEPTA said Saturday that it had removed 120 Silverliner V passenger cars - nearly a third of its passenger railcar fleet - from service due to a "significant structural defect," and that the cars would remain sidelined until repairs are made. The decision raised the prospect of considerable commuter delays when work schedules return to normal after the July 4 holiday weekend. SEPTA spokeswoman Carla Showell-Lee said that the defects had been discovered Friday and that the decision to pull them from service was made in a conference call of senior SEPTA managers.
NEWS
July 3, 2016 | By Olivia Exstrum, Staff Writer
A SEPTA transit police officer caught on a bystander's video throwing a man to the ground June 4 has been investigated and disciplined, but will remain on the force, SEPTA Transit Police Chief Thomas Nestel III said Friday. Matthew Sinkiewicz, who Nestel said has been an officer with the department for about a year, can be seen in the minute-long clip ordering Anthony Barlow to sit down at SEPTA's Frankford Transportation Center. After Barlow verbally declines to sit several times, Sinkiewicz grabs him and forces him to the ground.
BUSINESS
July 2, 2016 | By Jason Laughlin, Staff Writer
The name for Fifth Street's subway stop got longer but more descriptive at a ceremony Thursday. The Market-Frankford Line stop is now called Fifth Street Independence Hall Station. The change highlights the stop as a gateway to some of Philadelphia's most famous landmarks and makes using the subway easier for tourists unfamiliar with the city, officials said. "Naming this station will make public transit even more embedded in our city," said Mayor Kenney. SEPTA will be updating its station maps to reflect the change in the near future, said Jeff Knueppel, the authority's general manager.
NEWS
June 28, 2016
Six SEPTA Regional Rail lines were suspended for about an hour Sunday afternoon because of an issue at the agency's Wayne Junction power station, officials said. The signal system and the overhead power lines that power the trains were down due to a "temporary equipment failure" at the substation, which powers the northern half of the regional rail system, said Andrew Busch, a SEPTA spokesman. Busch did not know exactly what caused the problem, but he said the facility dates back to the 1930s.
NEWS
June 25, 2016
ISSUE | CLEAN ENERGY SEPTA, go sustainable As a steering committee member with 350 Philadelphia, a climate-change group that opposes the building of a natural gas plant in Nicetown, I would like to clarify several points made in Monday's article "Power struggle. " Natural gas is not "clean-burning. " It releases about half the carbon dioxide of coal, which is considered by many to be the dirtiest fuel. Nicetown residents are right to be concerned about their health. Burning natural gas releases nitrogen oxides - precursors to smog - and has been linked in some preliminary studies to worsening lung diseases such as asthma.
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