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Orange Line returns to normal service after March 16 derailment

An MBTA worker inspects the derailment of the Orange Line train just outside Wellington station in Medford.Matthew J Lee/Globe staff

Trains on the Orange Line resumed service between Oak Grove and Sullivan Square on Monday, after shuttle buses replaced service on that stretch of the line for four weeks following a March 16 derailment at Wellington Station, transportation officials said.

Trains between Wellington in Medford and Oak Grove in Malden will be held to a slower speed for “a few days,” a result of the weeks of construction work on the tracks, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority wrote in a tweet. The derailment caused the MBTA to pull its new fleet of cars manufactured by Chinese company CRRC from the tracks, and there is no timetable for their return, according to an MBTA tweet.


The decision to install shuttle buses between Oak Grove and Sullivan Square, which impacted five stations, came after the slow-speed derailment of a CRRC manufactured train “heavily damaged” a decades-old track switch, Joe Pesaturo, an MBTA spokesman said. No one was injured in the derailment.

The construction work was extended one week on March 25, which “allow[ed] for additional safety and reliability improvements that support the new Orange Line fleet and continue the replacement of infrastructure past its useful life,” Lisa Battison, an MBTA spokeswoman, wrote in a statement.

“The MBTA greatly appreciated its customers’ patience while crews worked to replace and modernize Orange Line rails and track switches,” Pesaturo said Monday morning.

The cause of the derailment has yet to be determined, Pesaturo said.

Charlie McKenna can be reached at charlie.mckenna@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @charliemckenna9.