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Flooded subway track blamed for long rush-hour delays

Commuters use new cellular and Wi-Fi service at stations to vent frustration.
Penn Station. MTA/Flickr

A malfunctioning water drain at the West Fourth Street-Washington Squarestation caused a cascade of delays on multiple subway lines Monday, inconveniencing tens of thousands of riders.

The trouble began with a clogged drain that caused water to flood onto the tracks at West Fourth Street, forcing power to be shut down at the station at around 7 a.m.

Consequently, service on the A, B, C, D, E, F, M and R lines were severely disrupted, causing long delays and service changes to those and other lines. Officials said regular service resumed by 10 a.m. but residual delays were reported.

Infuriated straphangers were able tovent their frustration on social mediausing the cellular and Wi-Fi service now available at every subway station as of Monday.

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“Going on the F train to 23rd Street there was an hour-and-a-half delay. It just kept stopping,” said Kelly Jairam, 15, who was supposed to have been in class at the High School of Fashion Industries at 9 a.m. Instead she spent the time talking to her friends on Snapchat, thanks to the MTA’s expanded Wi-Fi.

"Really glad we have three new stations and wifi for 4.5 billion dollars, but the @MTA still can't figure out melting snow," tweeted Natasha Simons.

Although the frigid conditions are believed to be a factor in the morning’s drainage issues, the MTA could only confirm a weather-related interference on the 7 line — a snow build-up under the arm of the signal, an agency spokesperson told Metro.

Jenny Romaine said she had been waiting for any local train at 86th Street to get her to Penn Station where she would head out to Long Island for her job as a caretaker. “It gives me anxiety, the waiting, but I’m not angry at the MTA. I harbor deep love for the subway system and mass transit,” she said.

 
 
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