A train car on one of SEPTA's regional rails caught fire Wednesday near the Overbrook Station, stranding about 600 commuters during a busier than normal rush hour due to the strike.
The R5 train's front car started to smoke on the tracks at the station. Conductors told everyone to move to the rear cars. Some passengers got off before the train left the station, others moved into the other three cars.
The train left to head into the city, but didn't get far. It stopped just south of the station, around 52nd and Lancaster, as the smoke got worse. Everyone was evacuated right before fire started shooting out the windows of the car.
No one was injured, but just about everyone was inconvenienced. The regional rails are already running at capacity right now due to the SEPTA strike.
"Then SEPTA's sort of a jerk to all of us," said Tony Van Dyke from Ardmore. "They're not telling us what's going on. They're telling us we'll get buses eventually...a lot of people are walking."
Denise Lolu was on the train behind the R5 and was told she'd be stuck for at least a couple of hours. Instead, she started the trek from 55th and Lancaster to 17th Street.
"So I don't have to go to the gym tonight," she laughed.
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia sent transportation over to pick up employees.
The R5 brings commuters from the Main Line into the city.
Service on the R5 was suspended until shortly after 9 a.m.
The train car is 40-years old. Investigators believe an electrical or heating element overheated and caught fire. They also said there was no reason to believe the fire was an act of sabotage.