BOSTON – MBTA engineers conducting a recent inspection identified a fault in a power cable that may have caused an electrical arc on a nearby train axle, transportation officials said Friday.
MBTA has inspected all Orange Line vehicles to determine if this problem manifests itself in other vehicles. We identified nine cars that appeared to have arced and removed all affected cars for repairs, including axle replacement. A total of 11 axles were affected across these nine vehicles, said T.
Orange Line cars are manufactured in Springfield by CRRC, a Chinese-owned rail car manufacturer.
MBTA and CRRC engineers continue to investigate the root cause of this condition, and the maintenance team is conducting an enhanced inspection program until permanent repairs are completed.
The Springfield CRRC plant is currently 17 months behind schedule to build cars for the MBTA.
MBTA said in September that 152 car shells had been produced, 78 at the Wellington car factory, 40 on the Springfield production line, and 28 in Springfield storage and entering production. and reported that six were in transit from CRRC China.
T found many problems with the car, such as brakes and undercarriage.
The MBTA warned that stopping train services would double waiting times for passengers.
“Passengers on the Orange Line will have a longer inter-train distance of approximately 15 minutes. We apologize for these inconveniences,” the agency said.
CRRC, which built a $95 million plant in Springfield to build cars for the T, is facing ongoing delays and quality issues.
In 2014, CRRC received a $566 million contract from MBTA to build 152 Orange Line and 252 Red Line vehicles in Springfield. In 2016, the state ordered 120 more Red Line vehicles, and in June 2022 he plans to begin production at a cost of $277 million.
A state under the government at the time. Deval Patrick had no federal funding for the subway car order, which could have required assembly in Massachusetts. Federal regulations prevent states from imposing such requirements when using federal money.
CRRC entered the North American market using its Springfield facility.
In 2017, CRRC was awarded a contract to build 64 subway cars for the Los Angeles subway, worth a potential $647 million. That same year, the Southeastern Pennsylvania Department of Transportation ordered CRRC for 45 of his double-decker commuter trains at a cost of $137.5 million.