Payments for light rail passes and fares will resume on Wednesday after a courtesy pause for riders during the ongoing service restoration.
The system was suspended on Dec. 8 for an emergency inspection of 53 light rail vehicles following the discovery of problems with punctured electrical conduits and connecting cables between cars that led to several smoke incidents.
Just over two weeks later, the light rail system began to operate as a portion of the fleet was cleared for use.
During that time, the service was free to riders as a “courtesy,” the Maryland Transit Administration stated.
However, on Jan. 3, passes and fares will resume for passengers.
Passes and fares vary in price to use the system that runs from Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport to Hunt Valley.
“It doesn’t bother me because I normally get a weekly pass on my phone. So I’m always prepared to pay when I am on the train,” Daryl McEachean said.
The update came with mixed feelings from riders who depend on the system.
“Nothing changed. It’s gotten no better,” Kevin Parker said. “I think it’s like this: The state of Maryland trying to get every penny they can get.”
So far, 27 light rail vehicles are back in play, according to the MTA’s Light Rail Service Restoration tracker.
Three of those vehicles were restored to service on Tuesday, the tracker shows.
WJZ is a media partner of The Baltimore Banner.