Overhead line damage leads to severe Metrolink disruption

There were big problems for Manchester Metrolink on Tuesday 15th and Wednesday 16th February after a major overhead line problem in the Trafford area led to the complete suspension of services on the Altrincham and East Didsbury lines with others seeing severely restricted services running. The issue was first reported around 1830 on the Tuesday evening with a limited service able to start again from around 1500 the following day.

The delays were caused by an overhead line fault between Trafford Bar and Old Trafford which required lengthy repairs by the maintenance team with these being started during the evening of Tuesday 15th February and continuing into the following day. The underlying cause of the fault isn’t known with an investigation underway to discover why it was so severe.

The timing of the power loss couldn’t have much worse coming as it did in the latter part of the evening rush hour and only around an hour before kick off for Manchester United’s match against Brighton and Hove Albion – with many fans being unable to make it to the game as a result of the problems on Metrolink or getting to the game and then struggling to get home. The nature of the problem also meant that trams came to a stand in between stations and passengers had to be de-trammed and evacuated along the tracks to safety, once the scale of the issue was known.

During the disruption the following services ran:

  • Altrincham – no service
  • Ashton-under-Lyne to Deansgate-Castlefield
  • Bury to Piccadilly
  • East Didsbury – no service
  • Eccles to MediaCityUK
  • Manchester Airport to Sale Water Park
  • Rochdale to Exchange Square
  • Trafford Park to Wharfside

Ticket acceptance was put in place on local bus services and some bespoke bus services were also operated.

Repairs took place through the night and morning and after test trams were run through the area services were able to resume on all lines from around 1500 on Wednesday 16th February. However, this was still not a full service with a limited service on the Airport, East Didsbury and Altrincham lines.

Alex Cropper, Head of Operations a TfGM, said: “I would like to reiterate our apologies to everyone whose journeys were affected by the issues on Metrolink, both last night and today. Engineers have successfully repaired the damage to overhead lines after working throughout the night and morning, but some delays are expected while the operator returns a full service on the lines. I’d like to once again thank passengers for their patience and understanding.”

This entry was posted in Manchester Metrolink. Bookmark the permalink.