After Washington DC’s Metro transit service announced an emergency 24-hour shutdown of the rail service for safety reasons, the half-million people who depend on Metro for their transportation needs everyday scrambled for alternatives. Among those alternatives: impromptu group rides into and out of DC organized under the hashtag #wmatabikepool.
it's official #wmatabikepool is a thing…lots of meetups being planned right now. Are you planning on a little early #biketoworkday ?
— Kate Ryan (@KateRyanWTOP) March 15, 2016
Metro stopped all rail service for emergency inspections after a tunnel fire started by faulty wiring earlier this week. Crews identified 26 areas with defects and completed repairs to 18 of them. The transit agency announced rail service would resume at 5 A.M. on Thursday, March 17, 2016.
The shutdown coincided with beautiful spring weather in the U.S. Capital region.
DDOT offered free one-day memberships to Capital Bikeshare, which reports rides by walk-up users doubled over the previous week, with most riders use the bike share bikes to travel from outlying areas to downtown.
A “bike pool” is like a car pool: multiple people riding together on the same route. For #wmatabikepool, experienced bike commuters offered to help novices navigate into the city.
If anyone out there in #bikedc wants a #wmatabikepool guide tomorrow AM, I'm rolling from Hyattsville->DC->Pentagon City around 7.30
— Taylor Jones (@jtaylorjones) March 16, 2016
Riding as a small crew is a great confidence booster. The group tends to be more visible to people in cars, and helps to overcome concerns about personal safety. Small group rides can also be a great way to socialize.
#MVT was pleasantly busy with #wmatabikepool riders this morning. Someone should tell them… https://t.co/J78XYff4ir pic.twitter.com/U1UzLl0wYd
— Bilsko (@Bilsko) March 16, 2016