Is Metro prepared for a potential terrorist attack?

Beside all the questions surrounding the Metro incident at L'Enfant Plaza on Monday, there is an added element of concern about what it means for homeland security.

Some officials and experts are asking whether the incident has exposed flaws a terrorist could exploit.

D.C.'s representative in Congress, Eleanor Holmes Norton, has demanded a member briefing next week to get to the bottom of what happened.

But there is a question you have probably asked yourself in the past 24 hours. And one Metro rider isn't shy about saying out loud.

"If it took them that long to get there to those people just for smoke, could you imagine if it was a terror attack?" said Tonisha Wallace.

You hear that a lot from a lot of people right now. How would Metro do if faced with a terror attack?

Riders are not the only ones concerned. The Department of Homeland Security's inspector general issued a report in 2013 criticizing how Metro accounts for its federal security grants and urging Metro to improve its management.

"I think that's a very understandable concern," said Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.).

He once chaired the emergency preparedness council for D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

"We have been working on emergency preparedness in this region since the events of 9/11 and we still unfortunately don't have it right," said Connolly.

First responders do train for potential terrorist attacks on Metro. But experts say if the past week has shown us anything, terrorist train as well too.

"Our Metro is ideal and it is in our nation's capital that is filled with military, intelligence and government types," said Steve Bucci, a former Pentagon official who is now with the Heritage Foundation.

He warns Monday's events could draw unwanted attention from terror groups.

"They are saying, 'Wow, these guys -- not too sharp on evacuating people.' It would be a good opportunity to really hit something and probably cause a lot of fear, because that is the point of terrorism, and also a lot of physical carnage."

For Tonisha Wallace though, she just wants the problems fixed and fixed now.

"It's always after the fact," she said. "They try to figure out things after the fact. They need to understand things before anything happen."

The warning and concern are not new. For a decade now, the Department of Homeland Security has been warning about the possibility of rail attacks in the wake of the bombing on the London Underground and in Barcelona, Spain.

By comparison, the last fatal accident on London Underground was back on February 28, 1975 -- 40 years ago next month.

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