Progress report for January 20, 2017 – negative collector shoes


As a follow-up to the breakdown in métro service that occurred on Saturday, January 14 on a portion of the Orange line, Société de transport de Montréal is releasing a second progress report on its investigation into the problem found with the negative collector shoes on MR-73 and AZUR trains.

Monday January 16 to Tuesday January 17

  • Damaged components sent to Polytechnique’s laboratory for failure analysis
  • Track inspected by our specialists walking along tail tracks behind station
  • Instrumentation of last AZUR train received (the 13th) by means of installing four cameras and a lighting system under the train

Overnight, from January 17 to 18

  • Two-way run by AZUR train with instruments along full length of Orange line at maximum operating speed of 72 km/h (a 60-km run)

Wednesday, January 18

  • 15 hours of images recorded while instrumented AZUR train is running reviewed under slow-motion

Thursday, January 19

  • Run by AZUR train with instruments, during morning and evening rush hour, without passengers, to inspect tail tracks behind station, which cannot be done at night
  • Repairs completed on seven of the eight damaged AZUR trains, the eight being involved in the January 14 incident


  • Close monitoring and surveillance of trains travelling on Orange line
  • Retrieval of all debris and inspection of tunnels
  • Visual inspections of
           -   negative collector shoes on MR-73 and AZUR trains
           -   track switches along Orange line, and of garages and workshop

In conclusion:

  • On Friday morning, the STM was in touch with Polytechnique Montréal that concluded the problem with the collector shoes is linked to lateral force. As such, the failure mode does not correspond to that of a collision with an object on the tracks or to the early onset of fatigue.
  • In light of these analyses, the STM will continue its nightly inspections while focusing on track switches and tight curves in the tunnels as possible sources for the lateral force that is damaging the collector shoes.
  • AZUR trains will not resume passenger service for the time-being.
  • Next update: Friday, January 27, 2017.