A woman died and at least 80 other passengers were reportedly injured Monday afternoon when a D.C. metro station suddenly filled up with smoke.
The smoke was first reported around 3:20 p.m. on the upper level of the L'Enfant Plaza metro station, NBC reports. The injured passengers were reportedly waiting to enter the station on board a Yellow Line train when the tunnel suddenly went dark and the cars filled with smoke. Via NBC:
"It was just very smoky in there," said passenger Fitz Carter from aboard a Metro bus waiting to be taken to a hospital. "We couldn't see anything. The visibility was poor. Right now, there's a lot of burning in my throat and my chest. Everybody got as low as they possibly could to the ground, because that's where the best possibility for oxygen was."
Officials were finally able to clear the tunnel by unplugging the electric third rail and turning on exhaust fans, enabling hundreds of passengers to walk through the dark tracks to safety, the LA Times reports. At least 84 people were hospitalized, and one woman reportedly died from her injuries.
"There was a woman who was in distress on that train, and I'm sorry to say she's passed away," Metro General Manager Richard Sarles told reporters.