www.redeyechicago.com/news/cta/chi-new-cta-bombardier-l-cars-to-go-back-in-serviceminus-defectplagued-wheel-parts-20120504,0,4960340.story

redeyechicago.com

New CTA 'L' cars to go back in service--minus defect-plagued wheel parts

By Jon Hilkevitch

Tribune reporter

1:14 PM CDT, May 4, 2012

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Minus defective parts originally installed on the trains, the CTA's new rail cars will be re-introduced into service this weekend, transit officials said today.

The 5000 Series rail cars, manufactured by Bombardier Transportation, will operate on the Pink Line, officials said. Initial service will involve two six-car trains.

The CTA removed the cars from service in mid-December after inspectors found irregularities in the journal bearing housings on the wheel assemblies. Subsequent tests revealed serious defects in the steel parts, which were made for Bombardier by a foundry in China.

The cars were retrofitted with new journal bearing housings that were made by different suppliers, the CTA and Bombardier said.

Bombardier has delivered 70 cars to the CTA, 54 of them retrofitted and 16 of them brand new, according to the CTA. 

Bombardier is also ramping up toward resuming production of the 706 cars that the CTA ordered for more than $1 billion, officials said. The CTA expects to receive 14 to 20 cars each month once production at Bombardier's plant in Plattsburgh, N.Y., is at full tilt.

The transit agency is retraining all its rail operators to re-familiarize them with the new cars.

jhilkevitch@tribune.com

Twitter @jhilkevitch