Portland, Ore. — As an extended period of extreme heat is poised to impact the region, TriMet is closely observing weather patterns and assessing conditions across its transit network to ensure the safety and efficiency of operations.
In recent years, TriMet has been dedicated to mitigating heat-related delays on the MAX system. As temperatures approach 100 degrees, the majority of the MAX train routes can maintain their regular speeds. However, specific segments of the MAX Green Line (between Gateway Transit Center and Clackamas Town Center) and the MAX Orange Line (between SE 17th & Holgate and Milwaukie/Main) necessitate reduced speeds once temperatures surpass 90 degrees. This precautionary measure allows operators to vigilantly monitor for potential issues such as overhead wire sagging or rail distortion known as sun kinks. Remarkably, on exceptionally hot days, the rail temperature can surge to be 20 to 30 degrees hotter than the ambient air.
In situations where consecutive days of excessive heat are forecasted, and nighttime temperatures fail to provide relief, commuters should anticipate delays across all MAX lines. The reduced speeds in higher-speed zones are a protective measure to ensure safe travel.
For travelers embarking on journeys during periods of extreme heat, advance planning is recommended. Allocating extra time, carrying an adequate supply of water, dressing appropriately for the conditions, and consulting trimet.org/alerts for updates on potential delays or disruptions are strongly advised. While both TriMet trains and buses are equipped with air conditioning, individuals should be prepared for the prevailing conditions, especially if utilizing a stop or station with limited shade.
TriMet remains committed to upholding the well-being of its passengers, implementing necessary measures to address challenges posed by adverse weather conditions. Your cooperation and preparedness contribute significantly to a secure and comfortable transit experience during these conditions.