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LIRR derailment causes traffic nightmare for morning commuters

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On what is already a day of messy commutes the Long Island Railroad has a problem on its hands — a derailment.

It happened near the Jamaica station at about 9 p.m. Monday, according to MTA spokesman Joe Calderone.

“We did have a derailment.  An 8 car train, 4 of the cars are off the track.”  Calderoone says the cause of the derailment is under investigation and no one was injured. The incident did cause service disruptions.

“We did have 11 cancellations , 5 trains were diverted to Brooklyn, but that’s out of 144 trains we run every morning,”  he said. “We are getting people to work and we’ll get them home tonight.”

The MTA says the damage was to a half mile stretch of the track west of Forest Hills including the running rails and the third rail which carries the power.  They are trying to determine if the concrete ties were also damaged.

“Once we get the derailed trains out of the way we’ll have a better idea of the extent of the damage.”  Asked if they see problems for the evening commute Calderone said “There could be some residual delays.”

But most of the riders we talked to said they are taking it in stride.  “Brooklyn doesn’t help me when I work in Jersey but I’ll really just lose a couple of minutes.” said one man who was diverted through Atlantic Yards in Brooklyn.  Another said ” All in all they are pretty good, and on time so I’m fine with it.

Commuters are being advised to check the L.I.R.R.’s website, leave early and to expect some delays.