Commuter Rail Operator Blames Delays, Cancellations on Defects in New Trains

We've got ourselves a bunch of lemons.

For the second morning in a row, the MBTA had to cancel four commuter rail trains Thursday. The problem? We’ve been sold a bunch of lemons.

Commuter rail operator Keolis says the rash of poor service can be attributed to recently discovered defects in eight of their 40 new locomotives. After just two years in service, these little-engines-that-can’t are plagued with mechanical issues, leaving Keolis without the appropriate number of trains for full service, the Globe reports.

The Stoughton 6:20 a.m. inbound train, Lowell 6:40 a.m. inbound train, Newburyport/Rockport 8:33 a.m. inbound train, and Rockport 6:39 a.m. outbound train were canceled Thursday morning, while the Franklin 7:40 a.m. and 7:50 a.m. inbound trains were delayed.

“A combination of equipment shortages due to mechanical issues and other equipment unable to move due to a trespasser strike in the evening have necessitated the cancellation of these trains,” Keolis said in a statement. “We have worked throughout the night to mitigate issues surrounding morning service delivery and continue to work to address the issue.”

The MBTA fiscal management control board voted last summer to give Keolis at least $66 million more over its eight-year contract.