Heat slows down Confederation Line service
An east-bound OTrain pulls in to Rideau Station on the Confederation Line of the Light Rail Transit system in Ottawa, ON. (Brenda Woods/CTV Ottawa)
OTTAWA -- The Confederation Line is running a little slower due to the heat, causing longer commutes for transit riders.
In a tweet, OC Transpo said, "As we are experiencing extreme heat today, trains on Line 1 are travelling at slower speeds in accordance with our operating procedures."
OC Transpo says all systems and trains are operating normally, but customers may experience a "slight increase in travel time."
Councillor Allan Hubley tweeted the maximum speed on the Confederation Line Thursday afternoon is 50 kilometres an hour.
At 2 p.m., the temperature hit 31C at the Ottawa Airport. With the humidex, it felt like 33 degrees.
In a memo to Council obtained by CTV News Ottawa, Director of Transit Operations Troy Charter says the trains are operating "normally and in accordance with our standard operating procedures."
"It is important to note and I want to highlight that these procedures are standard in the rail industry when extreme heat is experienced and is/has been a standard operating response for Line 2, the Trillium Line."
The Confederation Line is currently running on a Saturday schedule from Monday to Saturday due to reduced ridership during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Charter adds, "This standard procedure is one part of our safety programs that proactively monitor train and track conditions when extreme temperatures are experienced. All trains and systems are operating normally however some customers may experience slightly longer travel times of up to a few minutes."
When the temperatures drop back to seasonal levels, Charter says the speed reductions will be lifted.
Rideau Transit Group has been conducting maintenance on the light rail transit system to address the problems with the nine-month-old system.
Charter says speed reductions have been put in place along other sections of the track as part of RTG's overall rectification plan.