For immediate release: February 19, 2019

Metro to restore more bus service at 5 p.m., expect normal service Thursday


Metro to restore more bus service at 5 p.m., expect normal service Thursday

Metro will upgrade bus service to its Moderate Snow Service Plan at 5 p.m. today, restoring service on dozens of routes that had not been operating earlier today under the “severe” snow service plan. Under the “moderate” plan, more bus routes are in service; however, pre-planned detours are in effect to keep buses off of hills, narrow roadways and other challenging areas in winter weather conditions.

Metro expects that the Moderate Snow Service Plan will remain in effect through the end of the day Wednesday. Customers should expect the restoration of normal bus service on Thursday morning. 

MetroAccess service for customers with disabilities will begin offering “outbound” service (i.e. trips from customers’ homes to other destinations) beginning at 7 p.m. today. Earlier, the service was providing “return home” trips only to prevent customers from becoming stranded away from their homes during the storm.

Metrorail will continue operating with trains every 12-minutes per line to allow for ongoing de-icing operations over the next several hours. The rail system will return to normal weekday service on Thursday. 

For updated information, customers are encouraged to check the Service Status page at before traveling, or sign up for MetroAlerts to receive updates for their bus or train via email or text message.



Metro is fully deploying resources in response to a significant winter storm that is forecast to impact the Metro service area on Wednesday. Due to the potential for hazardous travel conditions, Metro is advising customers of the following service changes:


  • Metrorail service will operate every 12 minutes on each line Wednesday to allow deicing equipment to operate between passenger trains and to match significantly reduced ridership demand in the morning. Service levels may be increased during the day if conditions allow.
  • The system will operate regular hours from 5 a.m. until 11:30 p.m. All stations will be open.
  • To prepare for the storm, Metro will run special de-icing trains overnight and during the morning hours to prevent ice buildup on the third rail. Switch heaters will be activated to prevent snow and ice buildup at outdoor switch locations. Employee shifts are being extended to 12 hours, and additional crews are being called in to clear station platforms, walkways and parking areas.
  • For safety reasons, the top levels of all Metro parking garages will be closed due to expected snow/ice accumulation. Parking customers should use other garage levels.
  • Customers are encouraged to allow extra travel time and use extreme caution when walking on exposed surfaces, including parking lots, sidewalks, and station platforms.


  • Based on the current forecast, which calls for heavy snowfall during the morning rush hour, Metrobus will begin Wednesday under the Severe Snow Service Plan. Under the severe plan, buses provide limited service on major roadways only. Many bus routes do not operate when a severe plan is in effect.
  • Customers should travel only if necessary. Metro is advising customers of the possibility that bus service may be temporarily suspended with little or no notice if it becomes unsafe to operate due to ice accumulation. Please plan accordingly.
  • If you must travel, plan for the possibility of delays and increased wait times due to weather/road conditions.


  • To ensure that no customer is stranded away from home during the storm, MetroAccess service for customers with disabilities will be limited to “return home” trips only on Wednesday between 4 a.m. and 7 p.m. All other trips will be canceled.
  • MetroAccess service may be subject to significant delays due to weather/road conditions.
  • Due to the nature of MetroAccess service, where vehicles often travel on secondary or tertiary streets, customers may experience lengthier trip times due to road conditions. In some cases, "door-to-door" service may be unavailable where driveways or sidewalks have not been cleared of snow and ice. In such cases, the driver will provide "curb-to-curb service" instead.

Metro’s Rush Hour Promise 10-minute service guarantee will not be in effect Wednesday due to expected weather conditions.

Metro will continue to monitor conditions throughout the day. Service is subject to change as conditions warrant. Customers are encouraged to stay informed by signing up for MetroAlerts to receive text or email messages with up-to-date information on service changes or disruptions. Changes will also be announced through Metro’s Status and Alerts page on and through Metro’s social media channels on Twitter @Metrorailinfo @Metrobusinfo.