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Montreal’s new mass-transit system fails first morning rush hour test

Service for the Réseau express métropolitain was halted due to a technical problem on Monday, the first rush-hour test for Montreal's largest public transit project in decades.

Trains could be seen at a standstill on tracks near Champlain Bridge

Trains not moving.

The Réseau express métropolitain, Montreal's newest mass-transit system, has had to halt service in both directions during its first rush-hour commute on Monday, forcing passengers to get off the trains and triggering the service's emergency backup plan.

Shortly after 9 a.m., the REM put out a notice on social media that service was going to resume gradually.

The southern branch of the REM, which links downtown Montreal to Brossard on the South Shore was inaugurated on Friday.

Just before 8 a.m., the driverless trains stopped running, and according to a message relayed to commuters, the delay was due to a "technical problem."

Several trains at a standstill could be seen on the tracks near the Champlain Bridge.

At the time, riders were told the delay would last approximately 20 minutes.

Service began gradually resuming after 15 minutes, but it appears the kinks were still not ironed out and passengers exited the trains.

Shuttle buses were deployed to take riders from the Panama station on the South Shore and the Gare Centrale station downtown.

Lacroix says the trains will continue to run between Brossard, the branch's southern terminus, and the Panama station, which is also on the South Shore.

"That's to bring people to the Panama station, where the contingency plan [with shuttle bus service] begins," he told Radio-Canada.

Tens of thousands of Montrealers tested out the new trains during the weekend, as the rides were free.

WATCH | Want to try the REM? Here's how:

A beginner’s guide to riding Montreal's REM

3 days ago

Duration 3:50

The hype is real. It’s finally here. Watch this before hopping on board.


Antoni Nerestant


Antoni Nerestant is a journalist at CBC Montreal.

    With files from Radio-Canada and Jennifer Yoon

    Credit belongs to : www.cbc.ca

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