QUEENS — A host of unrepaired rail defects that weren't caught by subway track inspectors for an entire year caused an F train to derail in Woodside last May, according to a report from the MTA released Friday.
Investigators found a broken metal plate and broken fasteners that had been damaged for at least one year just south of the 65th Street station in Woodside, where an eight-car F train derailed on May 2, the report said.
Additionally, the tie under the plate was in poor condition, part of the rail that broke was not installed correctly, and a bolt required to secure a joint bar underneath the rail was missing, according to the report.
“Individually, none of them was capable of causing a derailment, but the combination of defects in one location was the most likely cause of the derailment,” the MTA said in a statement.
Thirty-two people were injured and more than 1,000 straphangers were stranded underground when six of the eight cars derailed, causing more than $2 million dollars in damages.
The MTA track inspection program requires every inch of mainline track to be walked and inspected by trained personnel twice a week and by supervisors twice a month, yet they failed to find and repair the broken plate, fasteners and the deteriorated tie, the report found.
Disciplinary action is being pursued against three maintenance supervisors and a track inspector for their roles in the derailment, the MTA said.
The derailment also caused the MTA to review its track inspection program.
Eight maintenance supervisors will be added to the MTA's Division of Track, and supervisors will inspect the five corridors with the highest number of broken rails more often, the authority said.
Those corridors are already inspected monthly by ultrasonic inspection cars, and new teams have been put in place to identify and repair rails defect faster, the MTA noted.