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Metro-North To Begin Work To Increase Power Supply For New Haven Line

Last Fall, Service Was Halted For Nearly 2 Weeks Due To Outage
New Haven line commuters wait for a train. (credit: CBS 2)

New Haven line commuters wait for a train. (credit: CBS 2)

RYE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork)Metro-North Railroad workers will begin work this weekend to upgrade the power supply for the New Haven line following last fall’s crippling outage.

As WCBS 880′s Sean Adams reported from the Rye station, the work will include installing backup options and redundancies.

The railroad has been beefing up its power supply system since a Con Ed feeder cable blew out in Mount Vernon late last September. Service came to a screeching halt on the New Haven line for nearly two weeks.

Crews will work this weekend to install a second new transformer at the Mount Vernon East substation. The two new transformers will replace four 35-year-old ones.

According to Metro-North, one transformer provides adequate power for the line.

A similar upgrade completed in Cos Cob last month allows backup power to be rerouted to the New York side via Harrison and Rye, Adams reported.

“The contingency plan is sound and is backed by this new Harrison tie system,” said Metro-North President Joseph Giulietti. “Replacing this old substation is an important step in improving power supply to the New Haven Line overall.”

Should the railroad experience a power outage, it would take the tie two hours to activate. At that time, regular service would be able to run, according to the railroad.

The new transformer also will bring about some power conservation.

Brakes on the new M-8 cars are regenerative. The upgraded equipment will pump the electricity they produce back into the grid.

During the 12-day outage, the New Haven line had used diesel trains and was running at about 50 percent capacity for the first half of the outage.

Frustrated commuters complained of overcrowded trains, long wait times and poor communication by Metro-North.

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