NTSB: Rails too far apart at site of Metro train derailment

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal investigators say rail tracks were almost 2 inches too far apart at the site of a Metro train derailment that injured a passenger.

The train derailed on Friday near the East Falls Church station in northern Virginia. One passenger was hospitalized and service was disrupted until Monday.

The National Transportation Safety Board said in a news release Wednesday that its investigators found the track gauge was too wide to run trains safely. Investigators also found more than 30 feet of track with no effective crossties between the rails.

NTSB spokesman Christopher O'Neil says investigators also found that Metro was conducting only monthly inspections of its crossovers, where trains move from one track to another. Metro's own standards call for twice-weekly inspections, which the agency has agreed to perform.

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