Full SEPTA rail service not expected by Labor Day

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Some of the 120 Silverliner V railway cars taken out of service by SEPTA sit in the Powelton storage yard in West Philadelphia. (AP photo/Harry Hamburg)

Some of the 120 Silverliner V railway cars taken out of service by SEPTA sit in the Powelton storage yard in West Philadelphia. (AP photo/Harry Hamburg)

SEPTA officials gave reporters a tour of the agency’s Overbrook maintenance shop Thursday as workers contend with more than 100 regional rail cars sidelined for safety reasons.  

The newest Silverliner cars line the shop and are in various stages of disassembly.  SEPTA wants a good fix, which won’t necessarily be quick, said Ron Hopkins, assistant general manager of operations.

“You have to give us an opportunity to understand all the information,  get consensus,” he said. “We want to brief not only the executive staff at SEPTA, the board and our partners on what our plans are moving forward.

In a  nutshell, Hopkins said, that means the 120 cars will not be fixed by September.

“The entire fleet by Labor Day? No,” he said. “We’re working hard to get some cars back.”

In the meantime, SEPTA is looking to lease additional cars from transit agencies in Maryland and Boston. 

Hopkins had no definitive timeline for restoration of all the sidelined cars, which  make up a third of the regional rail car fleet.

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