A power problem stalled a train at the Prospect Park subway station, stranding thousands of straphangers for four hours on the B and Q lines on Wednesday.
The trouble started when an empty Manhattan-bound Q train got stuck at the Prospect Park station, which sits under the intersection of Ocean and Flatbush avenues in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, at 11:10 am, according to a spokeswoman for the transit system. Some out-of-luck commuters held out hope for a speedy recovery, sitting on a stalled B train inside the Church Avenue station only to be told by a train announcer that they would be better off trying their luck on a bus.
“It’s horrible, period,” said Fatima Kamara, a Flatbush resident trying to get to work Downtown from the Church stop. “You plan all this and nothing is working.”
Kamara lamented that no Metropolitan Transportation Authority staff was deployed to the station entrance to inform commuters of the indefinite delay, forcing people to find out by walking through the turnstiles and boarding a stalled train.
When crews went to inspect the problem at Prospect Park, they found damage to the third rail, the spokeswoman said. The stuck train could not be removed until power was restored, she said.
The repair work was finally completed at 3:20 pm, she said.
Some straphangers sat it out in an unmoving car at Church Avenue for as long as an hour and a half only to be told that they must venture back above-ground.
“Every half hour they were saying it would be another 30 minutes,” said Sara, a Flatbush resident who was running late for a writing class in Manhattan and declined to give her last name. “I don’t know how I’m going to get there.”
A Community Newspaper Group production artist was among the marooned workers and briefly pondered heading home for the day.
“I’ve been trying to get to the office since 11 o’clock,” said office legend John Napoli at 1:30 pm. “This is horrible. It’s a total nightmare.”
No passengers were stuck on trains, according to the transit agency, but the platforms along the suspended section of lines were packed with people, area buses were so crammed they are turning away riders, and trying to hail a cab was for those hours a losing proposition.
— with Nathan Tempey