Investigators Rule Out Rail Flaw as Cause of Queens F Train Derailment
WOODSIDE — A broken rail found at the scene of the F train subway derailment in Queens last month was not the cause of the crash that left more than 1,000 people stranded underground, officials said Monday.
The broken rail was discovered at the scene on 65th Street and Broadway in Woodside on May 2, after six of the eight cars on a Brooklyn-bound F train went off the tracks, injuring 19 people and forcing hundreds to evacuate.
It had been installed in February to replace another rail that had cracked — and was inspected just a week before the Woodside derailment, by both an on-foot inspector and a specialized rail car that can detect internal defects. There were no problems found then, the MTA said previously.
In addition, inspectors after the crash said there were no flaws in the rail, and no reason to believe it caused the crash.
"We've been informed the rail itself conformed to transit specifications and was not defective," New York City Transit President Carmen Bianco said at a committee meeting Monday, adding that 85 rail sections from the same batch were also field-tested and no defects were found.
Bianco said they have not yet received the full report from the laboratory that inspected the rail, and that their probe into the incident is ongoing.
"As for the actual cause of the derailment, our investigation continues," he said.