After a glorious opening weekend marked by station parties and huge crowds lined up to ride train cars to the coast for the first time in more than 50 years, Metro's new Expo Line extension came down to earth a bit Monday. In its first big test as a viable option for commuters, the train ran into a few poorly-timed stumbling blocks.
The morning began with an unfortunate fiasco when a drunk driver crashed through a fence and came to a halt on top of the tracks (the driver was unharmed). As LAist reports, the positioning of the car blocked trains in both directions, forcing Metro to shuttle passengers past the obstruction by bus for over an hour.
Later, a train broke down by the Pico Station; according to the LA Times, it stayed put there for about 15 minutes, holding up other trains behind it and throwing Metro's new schedule out of whack. Similar delays were also reported over the weekend, with KPCC reporting that mechanical issues and safety concerns slowed the journey of at least one train by about 13 minutes.
New riders hoping to shave some time off of their morning commutes were probably disappointed Monday, but then, that's not really the point of the Expo Line in the first place. Taking a car—or as KPCC notes, a bike—will probably be faster than commuting by rail in almost any situation. The train, however, provides an option for those without cars, for those who prefer not to drive, and for those who would rather relax with a book and not have to worry about traffic. That is, until that traffic ends up crashing through a fence and sitting on the tracks.