Passengers faced crammed conditions on SkyTrain platforms Tuesday morning.

Transit riders vent over snarled SkyTrain service

Some want TransLink to issue refunds after multi-hour delay

TransLink is apologizing after a seven-hour shutdown of a section of the Expo Line caused huge delays and severe crowding for SkyTrain passengers Tuesday morning.

Trouble with a section of power rail that was improperly installed during overnight maintenance work near Main Street station caused system-wide delays.

Transit riders took to social media to vent, with some reporting their trip to downtown Vancouver took two to three hours after waiting for bus bridges or shuttle trains to carry them between Joyce and Main Street stations.

“I am one of your biggest supporters, but today’s nightmare was an epic fail on all parts,” Tracey Flattes wrote on TransLink’s Facebook page.

She was among many passengers who complained of poor communication by TransLink and insufficient help from staff for the throngs that were packed into SkyTrain stations awaiting trains.

“I understand that things happen that are out of control, but things that are should be managed properly, and weren’t,” added Kris Liu, who cited “terrible communication, inadequate buses and misinformed staff.”

Others gave up altogether.

“I spend 25 minutes waiting for a bus, then when it finally comes and I have to make a transfer to another bus, it comes but is completely full,” recounted Julia Hart. “Ten minutes later, another one comes, and it too is completely full. I give up and come back home, missing a $200 class.”

Many passengers are calling on TransLink to compensate them for the morning disruption.

“Today has been the absolute worst,” said Chris Keehn. “Where are our refunds?”

The shutdown began just before 6:30 a.m. and normal service was restored on SkyTrain just after 1:30 p.m.

TransLink spokesman Derek Zabel said the power rail installation error caused damage to the collector shoe assembly of a train, which in turn ripped up a section of communications cable.

“We certainly apologize to our customers who experienced delays today and hopefully we can earn the right to continue to serve them in the future,” Zabel said.

“This was a major service disruption for customers right in the middle of the morning commute.”

A previous SkyTrain shutdown in early July was not related to the power rail replacement project, which will continue for several more months.

Zabel said TransLink has no capability to issue refunds, although that may be an option after Compass cards are rolled out.

Just Posted

Ridge paddlers named to provincial team

Malfesi leads group of six athletes from the Whonnock club

SFU creates fund in memory of Aiden Serr

A celebration of his life on Saturday, Nov. 25 at 1 p.m. at Maple Ridge Baptist Church.

VIDEO: ‘Glow Christmas’ opens for the holiday season

Massive Langley light show features 500,000 lights

Should Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows partner on pools?

Pitt Meadows mayor suggest joint planning with Maple Ridge

UPDATE: Alert issued for South Alouette River

River is flowing high due to a controlled release from the Alouette Dam.

Can’t kill bears for eating honey

Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows farmers encouraged to use electric fencing

An adopted cat is the best 10 pounds you’ll gain this season

BC SPCA encouraging families to add a forever feline friend during adoption event Nov. 24 to Dec. 3

Uber official says public needs to push for ridesharing in B.C.

Mike van Hemmen tells Kelowna Chamber of commerce ridesharing would be ‘win-win-win’

B.C. co-ops relieved with Ottawa’s housing strategy

Federal government to have a new co-operative housing funding model in place by 2020

B.C. NDP referendum plan sparks legislature battle

David Eby says public will decide on proportional referendum

Hammy has been freed of his threads, a purple antler remains

The iconic Prince Rupert buck with a piece of hammock attached to his antlers was caught by COs

Court adjourned again for man linked to Shuswap farm where human remains found

Curtis Sagmoen will appear back in court on Dec. 14

Kirk McLean, Dave Babych in Surrey for Rogers Hometown Hockey stop

Roadshow event in December will include meet-and-greet with the NHL alumni

B.C. family advocating for drug decriminalization following death of son

Federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh has noted the New Democrats would decriminalize personal possession of all drugs

Most Read