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T Needs More Time To Fix New Orange Line Cars

New Orange Line trains will not return to passenger service this week as originally planned, the agency announced Friday, saying its crews need "additional time" to fix a problem with faulty bolsters that prompted the vehicles to be pulled from service.

"Following a thorough inspection of the new Orange Line trains, we've concluded that additional time is needed to address the identified fault," the MBTA tweeted Friday morning. "Safety is our top priority & has been the driving force throughout the process of releasing these vehicles. Thank you for your patience."

The T announced Tuesday that it had pulled two new six-car trains, which began running passenger trips in August and September, from service amid a problem with the steel beams involved in turning the vehicles. At the time, the MBTA said it expected the trains to return later this week.

In its tweet Friday, the MBTA did not offer a new target for when the trains would return to service, and a T spokesperson could not be reached immediately for comment.

The disruption is the third high-profile issue to befall the new Orange Line cars, which are the first amid plans to replace the entire fleet by the end of 2022. In September, officials took the vehicles offline for several days after a door leaf opened mid-ride, and in November, the trains were removed from service for about seven weeks because of a faulty pad interface between the cars and wheel truck assemblies.

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