A freight train derailed early this morning on the same tracks used by the Northstar commuter line, causing delays for people headed to work in downtown Minneapolis.
Metro Transit spokesman Bob Gibbons said officials heard from Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway at about 4 a.m. that the tracks were blocked a half mile north of the Northstar station in Fridley.
Metro Transit is transporting people by train only between Big Lake and Coon Rapids. When commuters arrive in Coon Rapids, they can transfer to a bus that will take them to downtown Minneapolis.
Gibbons said Metro Transit officials are at the stations making commuters aware of the delay.
"This is adding 20 to 30 additional minutes to a person's commute time," Gibbons said. "A lot of them, frankly, have just chosen to drive today."
The tracks should be cleared in time for the afternoon commute, Gibbons said.