TriMet's computer problems continue as hot weather threatens to delay transit

(KATU Photo)

PORTLAND, Ore. – Triple-digit temperatures, and ongoing technology issues, could impact public transit in the Portland area – again.

Tuesday, hundreds of riders waited longer than usual for the MAX to arrive at three downtown Portland platforms because of the hot weather and a problem with TriMet’s computer communication system.

A TriMet spokesperson apologized for the long waits on Tuesday.

However, the computer problems aren’t over. TriMet said they are still experiencing issues with their computer network Wednesday.

They said MAX, bus and WES are providing regular service Wednesday morning, but LIFT para-transit service is only able to provide life-sustaining trips at this time.

TriMet’s phones, including their Rider Support call center, and website are down. Ticket machines cannot process payment card transactions and customers cannot load money onto Hop cards.

“We sincerely regret the impact this network issue is having on our riders. Crews are working around the clock to try to resolve the issue,” TriMet said in a statement.

They also expect delays again Wednesday because of the heat. They said they might even shut down the WES Commuter Rail.

TriMet said the railroad that owns the lines won’t allow traffic on them when the temperature climbs above 105 degrees. That’s the temperature predicted for the Portland metro area Wednesday.

But, with the 100-degree temperatures, riders could expect a 30 to 45-minute delay, if not longer.

“It is frustrating because a lot of people depend on public transportation to get to and from where they need to go, and when you are dependent on that, I understand certain things are going to hold it up, but it just seems like it's an everyday occurrence,” said Brian Lee, a TriMet rider.

One way to monitor train delays is through the TriMet app and website.

Most platforms have a loud speaker that will talk about the delays. Some have a digital screen with the information.

Because of long wait times, TriMet suggests riders carry an extra bottle of water to stay hydrated.

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