A South Shore
commuter train was evacuated at Dune Park Station late on Sunday, after a
fire broke out in a pantograph atop one of the cars, the Porter Fire
Department is reporting.
Assistant Chief Dan
Branham told the Chesterton Tribune today that, at 10:40 p.m., the
PFD was dispatched to Dune Park Station in response to a report of an
electrical fire on top of eastbound Train 511, which had stopped
approximately 150 yards west of the station platform. On their arrival,
firefighters found the pantograph--the apparatus which collects power from
the overhead concatenary wire and communicates it to the train--burning on
the roof of the train’s second car.
Branham said that
the PFD--assisted at the scene by the Chesterton FD--used a chemical
extinguisher to douse the fire.
passengers were on board the train at the time and they were in the process
of being evacuated when firefighters responded. No one was injured in the
incident, Branham said. The PFD cleared the scene at 11:45 p.m.
Indiana Commuter Transportation District was working today to determine the
cause of the “electrical flash” in the pantograph, NICTD spokesperson Nicole
Barker told the Tribune. “There’s a great deal of due diligence to be
done to get to the root of the incident,” she said.
The affected car
itself was moved early this morning to the South Shore maintenance yard in
Michigan City for investigation and repairs, Barker noted. Some repairs were
also performed on the overhead concantenary wire, which necessitated the
busing of passengers on the day’s first westbound train, No. 102, from
Michigan City to Ogden Dunes. The second westbound train, however, No. 104,
ran direct from Michigan City and arrived in Chicago some 30 minutes late.
There were minor
delays throughout the morning but regular service was expected for the
remainder of the day, Barker added.