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The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) on June 3 will begin closing its Metrorail subway system at midnight every night to allow the implementation of its SafeTrack repair plan.The SafeTrack plan was designed to address safety recommendations from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the National Transportation Safety Board, WMATA officials said in a press release. The plan also accelerates work to eliminate maintenance backlogs and restores rail infrastructure "to good health," they added.The agency is expected to release a final revised version of its SafeTrack plan this week, local media reported. Today marks the deadline for WMATA to implement a "safety stand-down" to ensure that management, supervisors and controllers understand all applicable requirements for safe operations. The FTA last week ordered the D.C.-area transit agency to carry out the stand-down as part of a series of mandatory emergency preparedness measures.The FTA has threatened to withhold funding and shut down service if WMATA fails to address its persistent safety problems.
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