The Drive
See more of the story

Metro Transit officials are probing what caused a Blue Line train to derail south of downtown Minneapolis Friday morning, disrupting the commute for hundreds of riders for about 2½ hours.

A southbound train jumped the tracks across from Whiskey Junction and north of the Franklin Avenue station about 5 a.m., said Metro Transit spokesman Howie Padilla.

“It was a minor derailment,” he said.

But it was enough to knock out service in both directions between the 38th Street station and U.S. Bank Stadium in downtown Minneapolis until service was restored about 7:40 a.m.

No injuries were reported.

Brian Smoliak, of Minneapolis, was heading to the airport when the mishap occurred. He said the train passed over a switch and he felt a big jolt and the rail car jumped. Metro Transit employees used flashlights to search below the stalled train, he said.

“A guy was telling us to get off the train” and that a rear wheel was off the tracks, Smoliak said.

Passengers walked a short distance to the Franklin Avenue Station and boarded another train that continued south on the northbound tracks, Smoliak said. Replacement buses ferried passengers between 38th Street and downtown Minneapolis.

Crews used a hydraulic jack to lift the car back onto the tracks and move it to a nearby storage and maintenance facility.