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Serious delays to downtown SkyTrain service after ‘track issue’ leads to overcrowding

Passengers crowd the Main Street SkyTrain Station platform during a track issue affecting the Expo Line in downtown Vancouver on Jan. 16, 2020.
Passengers crowd the Main Street SkyTrain Station platform during a track issue affecting the Expo Line in downtown Vancouver on Jan. 16, 2020. Global News

A “track issue” on the Expo Line system in downtown Vancouver caused serious delays to SkyTrain service Thursday in the midst of the evening commute.

TransLink said the issue, which was first reported around 4 p.m., was affecting the track near Stadium-Chinatown Station, forcing trains to single track between Main Street and Commercial-Broadway stations.

A bus bridge was also been set up between Waterfront and Commercial-Broadway.

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The Millennium and Canada lines were not affected by the issue.

TransLink has not explained what the specific track issue was.

It’s not yet clear if it was related to the heavy snow that fell on the Lower Mainland between Wednesday evening and Thursday morning, or ice or flooding created by that snow.

The delay came as the evening commute ramped up, along with hockey fans descending on Rogers Arena for a Vancouver Canucks game set to start at 7 p.m.

Passengers at Main Street Station said they were frustrated by the long wait, some standing on the platform for longer than half an hour.

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“There’s no one from TransLink here to tell us what’s actually happening,” one man said. “People are screwed getting home.”

READ MORE: Power outages, traffic and transit delays as new round of snow and wind hits Lower Mainland

Attendants were seen on platforms explaining the issue to passengers.

When trains finally did arrive at Main Street, they were too crowded for many people to get on.

The issue was finally cleared just before 6 p.m., with TransLink warning long wait times will continue as the crowds disperse and service gets back to normal.

TransLink is asking customers to be patient and follow the latest information on its website and Twitter account.

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New storm causes more transit chaos
New storm causes more transit chaos