VTA resumes light rail service following mass shooting

Bay Area

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KRON0 — In the South Bay, the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority service began Sunday.

The service has been closed since late May due to the mass shooting at the rail yard where an employee killed nine coworkers.

Sunday was a soft start. Trains started running at 8 a.m. just in time for the 49ers-Raiders game.

“I drove to the Great Mall, parked there and taking the rail back so it’s easier, no traffic,” Michael Vasquez said.

Vasquez took the light rail for the first time to avoid the lane closures and post game traffic.

“It’s just much easier using the rails so I hope all the services continue,” he said.

The VTA began operating limited light rail service Sunday.

Trains will operate along VTA’s orange line that runs from the Mountain View Transit Center to Alum Rock Transit Center.

The green line will have limited service along First Street from Civic Center Station to Old Ironsides Station.

Trains on both lines will stop at each station on route, running at least every 30 minutes from 8 a.m. to 7 pm.

As far as Sunday’s service, VTA officials say so far so good.

“We’ve had good reports that service has been going smoothly,” VTA public information officer Stacey Hendler said. “Our light rail operators are doing a great job as usual and many of them are glad to be back to work.”

Trains have been out of service for three months since the mass shooting at the VTA rail yard in San Jose where nine workers were killed on May 26 by a coworker.

Light rail tracks have been inspected– and more than three-hundred employees have been re-trained and certified.

“People are looking for routines to get back to normal, never forgetting our fallen coworkers they’re always in our hearts and always in our thoughts,” Hendler said. “People I think are ready to get back to work and get some normalcy as well.”

More service is expected to open up starting next week.

VTA will not collect fares on light rail only, from now through Sept. 13.

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