More than 10,000 commuters were left to scramble home at the height of rush hour Monday after lightning struck a main transformer, shutting down Go Transit’s signal system and causing three hours of delays.
Service was completely shut down on the Go Transit’s Lakeshore West route after lightning struck near the Mimico Go Station between 5:30 p.m. and 6 p.m., said Anne Marie Aikins, a spokeswoman for Metrolinx. The strike turned off the Go Transit’s signal system, affecting most of Go Transit’s seven lines.
The Lakeshore East route was indirectly affected, with significant delays.
“Lakeshore East and Lakeshore West are our busiest corridors with the most trains and the most people,” Ms. Aikins said. “There was no point sending people out on trains and having them stuck.”
The lightning strike caused significant delays, with full service not restored until 9 p.m.
Ms. Aikins said while lightning-sparked grass fires can sometime impact service, a bolt striking a main transformer is rare. “It was a really awful commute for a lot of people who were pretty upset, which I completely understand.”
On Twitter, GO Transit said it encourages any passengers who were delayed to submit a claim through its web page, or by talking to a station attendant.