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Freight train derailment blocks Metra Southwest Line trains

Updated: June 13, 2013 4:56PM

The early afternoon derailment of a freight train locomotive on the South Side has affected evening rush service on Metra’s Southwest Service between downtown and the southwest suburbs.

The Norfolk Southern Railroad locomotive derailed at about 41st and Root streets, according to Metra spokesman Michael Gillis.

Since the derailment blocked all train traffic for Metra and Norfolk Southern, service on the Southwest Service has been affected, with some trains delayed up to 90 minutes and at least three run cancelled, according to Metra.

Outbound Train No. 827, scheduled to depart Chicago at 5:18 p.m. and arrive at the 179th Street station in Orland Park at 6:27 p.m., will not operate today, Metra said.

Another outbound train originally scheduled to depart Chicago at 6:15 p.m. and arrive at 179th Street at 7:21 p.m. has also been cancelled, according to Metra spokeswoman Meg Riley.One inbound train, scheduled to depart from the 179th Street station at 4:01 p.m. and arrive in Chicago at 5:04 p.m. was cancelled as well, Riley said.

Trains on this line heading out of the city “are expected to depart on time,” Riley said, but once they get going they could encounter delays adding up to an hour.

Inbound trains, which are departing from either the 179th or 153rd Street stations in Orland Park, will be departing “at least an hour late,” until the tracks are clear, she said. “We understand there is some damage to tracks,” she added.

For Southwest Service riders, Metra recommended the Rock Island, Heritage of Burlington Northern as possible alternatives.

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