Digest: DC Metro official reassigned, outside review launched

News Wire Digest for Sept. 10: BART increases service on three lines; Montana Passenger Rail Summit on tap
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Thursday morning rail news:

DC Metro official reassigned, outside review set in response to critical report

A DC Metro official cited in an independent report critical of the agency’s rail operations has been temporarily reassigned as Metro begins an outside review of her actions. The Washington Post reports that, according an email obtained by the newspaper Lisa Woodruff, senior vice president for rail services, will serve as a technical advisor while an outside law firm investigates allegations that she “may have violated safety or other policies or procedures,” according to the email from General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld to employees. Woodruff allegedly told employees to “resist required corrective actions” and not to talk with the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission, according to a report by the agency on ongoing safety issues in Metro’s rail operations center. [See “Digest: Report describes ‘toxic workplace’ at DC Metro rail center,” Sept. 8, 2020]

BART to increase peak-period service on three lines
Bay Area Rapid Transit trains will operate more frequently during peak periods as of Monday, Sept. 14. The San Francisco Examiner reports three routes — Antioch-Daly City, Richmond-Millbrae, and Berryessa/North San Jose-Daly City — will have trains operating every 15 minutes during weekday rush hours. Weekend frequencies will decrease slightly on all lines, with trains every 30 minutes, while the system will continue to run its current shorter hours — 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekends.

Montana Rail Passenger Summit set for Sept. 17
As work continues to form the agency to return Amtrak service to the southern part of the state, Missoula County will host a Montana Passenger Rail Summit on Sept. 17. The online event, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., will discuss the efforts to preserve Empire Builder service, to revive the “southern tier” route last served by the North Coast Hiawatha in 1979, as well as the formation of the Big Sky Passenger Rail Authority. So far, nine counties have ratified membership in that agency. Registration and more information is available here.
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