New MBTA Red Line trains enter service

New Red Line trains were spotted on the tracks and in service Wednesday, marking the first time the MBTA has put a new train into service on the line in decades.The first six Red Line cars were delivered from China, where they were manufactured, in October 2019. Future manufacturing will take place in a factory in Springfield. After being unpacked and reviewed, the train sets were in testing for many months. All the testing, however, does not guarantee a perfect transition into service.The new trains on the Orange Line, for example, were removed once because of an issue with door components and again because of a noise later traced to the wear pads at the point where the body of the train connects with the truck. In both cases, MBTA officials said they found ways to adjust the cars and prevent the problem in the future.“While the MBTA is pleased to put the first new Red Line train into passenger service, there is much work ahead of us,” General Manager Steve Poftak said in a statement. “As we enter 2021, the cars’ manufacturer and our vehicle engineering team are singularly focused on improving the pace of production and delivery. Subjecting the new Red Line and Orange Line trains to a high degree of scrutiny, the MBTA will continue to closely monitor the cars to ensure they are performing at optimum levels. When ridership begins to rebound in the future, new trains and major infrastructure improvements will combine to provide Red Line and Orange Line riders with safe and reliable service for decades.” The last time a new Red Line train entered service was 1994. These new cars are expected to last about 30 years. The MBTA ordered a total of 252 new cars for the Red Line.

New Red Line trains were spotted on the tracks and in service Wednesday, marking the first time the MBTA has put a new train into service on the line in decades.

The first six Red Line cars were delivered from China, where they were manufactured, in October 2019. Future manufacturing will take place in a factory in Springfield.

After being unpacked and reviewed, the train sets were in testing for many months.

All the testing, however, does not guarantee a perfect transition into service.

The new trains on the Orange Line, for example, were removed once because of an issue with door components and again because of a noise later traced to the wear pads at the point where the body of the train connects with the truck. In both cases, MBTA officials said they found ways to adjust the cars and prevent the problem in the future.

“While the MBTA is pleased to put the first new Red Line train into passenger service, there is much work ahead of us,” General Manager Steve Poftak said in a statement. “As we enter 2021, the cars’ manufacturer and our vehicle engineering team are singularly focused on improving the pace of production and delivery. Subjecting the new Red Line and Orange Line trains to a high degree of scrutiny, the MBTA will continue to closely monitor the cars to ensure they are performing at optimum levels. When ridership begins to rebound in the future, new trains and major infrastructure improvements will combine to provide Red Line and Orange Line riders with safe and reliable service for decades.”

The last time a new Red Line train entered service was 1994. These new cars are expected to last about 30 years.

The MBTA ordered a total of 252 new cars for the Red Line.

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