GO train service expected to be back to normal Wednesday morning after 'network-wide system failure'
Published Tuesday, October 3, 2023 1:52PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, October 4, 2023 12:07AM EDT
GO train service is expected to be back to normal on Wednesday morning following a “network-wide system failure” brought service to a standstill on Tuesday afternoon.
In a statement provided to CP24 late Tuesday night, the provincial transportation agency said that passengers may experience "some delays and modifications as we work to move our trains and crews back into place after today’s CN outage."
"We are committed to providing as much notice as possible to customers regarding any schedule changes but are encouraging all travellers to check our Service Updates page before heading out the door," said Metrolinx, which thanked all customers for their "patience today as we worked with CN to resolve this major issue."
The online outage was first reported just before 1:45 p.m. on Tueday and initially saw all GO and UP Express trains holding at their nearest station.
In a statement issued just before 8:20 p.m., CN said its internet connectivity has been restored.
The outage impacted most trains using CN rails, though the railway company said that its trains as well as those belonging to EXO trains (Montreal) and Amtrak Trains weren’t impacted.
“During the outage, CN worked with GO to temporarily take over their train dispatching responsibilities. This allowed for the partial resumption of GO and VIA services,” CN spokesperson Jonathan Abecassis said in a statement Tuesday night.
“GO Transit has now resumed dispatching their lines and they are working to resume their normal movements. CN will be working with GO to review the incident and put in place processes to avoid further disruptions.”
After all GO and UP Express trains stopped on Tuesday afternoon, just after 3 p.m., limited service resumed on the UP Express, followed by select GO train lines.
Just before 4:30 p.m., Metrolinx confirmed that it was “beginning to slowly resume service” and that it would prioritize getting people home from Union Station.
But it warned of “ongoing delays and cancellations” as it works to “recover rail service.”
“We are beginning to run outbound trains from Union Station about every 30 minutes. For customers travelling into Union Station tonight, service will be less frequent but should be between 30 to 60 minutes,” the statement read.
Metrolinx said that commuters should continue to consider alternative transportation methods or travel later this evening, when crowds are expected to be diminished.
Meanwhile, the investigation into the outage is continuing.
In an earlier statement, CN said that at this point it appears as though the outage resulted from an “internet connectivity and electronic data interchange issue.”
CN said that there is “no indication of a cyber security issue” at this point, though it noted that the investigation is still in its infancy.
“GO trains, VIA trains in and out of Union station, as well as CN’s customer service portal, all of which require an internet connection to CN's servers, are currently impacted,” CN said in the statement. “CN apologizes for the issue. We are working to get all services up and running safely and efficiently.”
LARGE CROWDS REPORTED
At one point earlier on Tuesday large crowds were seen inside Union Station as commuters arrived at the rail hub for scheduled trains that had been cancelled.
One of those commuters told CP24 that he looked into getting an Uber home but opted to wait at the station for hours upon realizing it would cost him $650 due to surge pricing.
Another commuter said that she too considered taking an Uber but had to abort those plans after realizing that a one-way trip to Brampton would cost her $400.
“That’s a no go,” she said.
The TTC added 10 trains on Line 1 and five trains on Line 2 in anticipation of “heavier-than-normal passenger loads" during the afternoon rush.
It also increased service on some streetcar lines and staged extra buses at key subway stations, including Kipling, Kennedy and Dundas West.