The orange line train sets a fire on the bridge. Chaos ensues. It’s T’s latest nightmare.

“Obviously, this is a frightening incident, and not the kind of service we want to provide our customers,” Bovtak said. “I want to offer my apologies to the people who were on this train, who had to experience this. I also want to offer my apologies to the people who were bothered by the diversion of the service we had to put in place after that incident.”

He said officials believed four windows were removed from the main train carriage during the fire to allow passengers to evacuate.

“This train was last inspected on June 23, so it was less than a month ago,” Bovtak said. “And the sill in question that was dismantled has been checked as part of this inspection. All of this series of trains are checked every 12,000 miles, which means roughly… every two to three months. I want to stress that these are our preliminary findings.”

The MBTA had earlier published information about the fire in a statement.

“With the help of MBTA personnel, approximately 200 passengers got off the train, but some people evacuated the train through windows in the first car,” TV spokesman Joe Pesatoro said in a statement. “Public security personnel picked up a person who jumped into the water after getting off the train. … MBTA notified the FTA and NTSB of the incident.”

Psatoro said flames and smoke were seen coming from the main car of the southbound orange train approaching the assembly station around 6:45 a.m.

“An unidentified passenger jumped from the bridge into the river,” Somerville Fire Chief Charles Breen said in a phone interview. “Our sea boat was in the river for training and was at the scene immediately. The woman refused to board the boat. She was fitted with a life jacket and proceeded to swim ashore… then she walked away.”

Brin said the train that caught fire was on a bridge over the Mystic River between Somerville and Medford.

Radio transmissions posted on indicated that T staff who responded to the train and were working to turn away passengers saw the woman jump into the water.

201 to control. I can see Medford Fire at the station. We’re about to finish evacuating the train. “We also have firefighting crews in the association,” supervisor Tee reported.

I paused for a while.

“I’ve got somebody jumping off the bridge into the water, actually, while we’re talking,” she said. 201 to control. [They’re jumping] From the bridge to the water below.”

William Tauro, who lives in the assembly row near the bridge, said he looked out the window to see the train stopping as smoke rose.

“I was looking outside and I said, ‘What the hell is going on there?'” said Tauro, 62. “I see from the window.”

Louis Bacon, 72, said he was working on his boat on the Mystic when he saw a helicopter flying in the area. Although he didn’t see the flames at first, Bacon said he wasn’t surprised to hear about the fire.

“You never want to see it, but it’s in the news — there’s always something going wrong on the T,” Bacon said.

Broken windows on the Orange Line train at Wellington Station in Medford on Thursday.David L Ryan/Globe Stuff

“No injuries were reported,” Bisatoro said, adding that buses were in place Thursday morning between Oak Grove and Community College stations, and that electricity on the damaged train had been cut earlier between Wellington and Jamblation stations.

Once the power was cut off, Brin said, the fire apparently broke out on its own.

The affected train was taken to Wellington Railroad yard for an investigation, according to Pesatoro.

“The MBTA Track and Power divisions are on the scene to inspect the infrastructure,” Pesatoro said. “MBTA notified the FTA and NTSB of the incident.”

One passenger posted photos and videos from the scene on Facebook.

“People jumped out of windows – fortunately no one hit the third rail,” the post said.

Commuter Rail tweeted at 8:20 a.m. that Haverhill Line trains were picking up slack to help passengers affected by the fire.

“All Haverhill Line trains will stop at Oak Grove Station until further notice to accommodate Orange Line passengers,” the company wrote.

Pictures and videos from the scene show that the damaged Orange Line had 01251 number. A vehicle with that number entered service for the MBTA between 1979 and 1981, according to, which tracks the fleet of T.

MBTA is still waiting to deliver hundreds of new train cars from Orange and Red Line from a Chinese company first contracted in 2014. They are meant to replace older cars like the ones involved in Thursday’s fire.

The Orange Line fire Thursday concludes with a harrowing year for MBTA passengers who have had to endure a seemingly endless series of safety accidents on the transportation system.

Two lawmakers who presided over Monday’s state headquarters hearing on T Safety issued a joint statement about the Orange Line fire, calling it a stark example of safety threats to the public.

“The images of the Orange Line fire this morning and the evacuation of passengers on the track are dramatic illustrations of the public safety threats posed by the current situation at the MBTA and further evidence of the need for its oversight hearings. [joint] The transportation committee’s co-chairs, State Representative Bill Strauss and Senator Brendan Crichton said.

The lawmakers added that “while we await the results of upcoming investigations, it is clear that despite assurances from the Baker administration that the MBTA’s safety management program is now operating on appropriate grounds, significant improvement is still needed. Our thoughts are with those who have experienced this frightening situation and we hope that Everyone is safe. We are scheduling additional hearings and look forward to continuing our screening in the coming months.”

Governor Charlie Baker, who appeared on GBH Radio, said the fire was “unacceptable” but was repulsed when host Jim Proud asked if the T was a “mess”.

Baker responded by defending T’s on-time performance and infrastructure upgrades.

“But things like that make people crazy,” Becker said. “It makes me crazy. And I totally understand why.”

The mayors of Boston and Somerville have also expressed concerns about the safety of the MBTA.

She thanked Somerville fire officials for their response and expressed gratitude that the passengers and T staff were safe, said Katiana Ballantyne, Mayor of Somerville.

She said she wanted to see more urgent action from the state to address T’s problems, calling for more investment in safety measures.

“All these accidents, problems with T, it’s like what else should happen?” Ballantine said. “We keep kicking the can all the way. It has to stop.”

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu said the fire provided more evidence of an old transit system in crisis.

“Breaking the MBTA threatens the safety of our community and the future of our city and region,” Wu said in a statement. “I will be reaching out to my colleagues across the region to engage more aggressively with the state in rapid system-wide updates. The City of Boston must do more to help the state lead this transformation, and we are ready to prioritize this work.”

Tauro, a resident of “Assembly Row”, also expressed his dissatisfaction with the state of the beleaguered transit agency.

“Whoever is in charge of the MBTA, fix it,” Toru said. “I don’t want to get stuck 100 degrees on that bridge, jump out the window on top of the mysterious river. Forget it.”

This breaking news story will be updated.

Emily Sweeney can be reached at Follow her on Twitter Tweet embed And on Instagram @emilysweeney22. Travis Andersen can be reached at Follow him on Twitter Tweet embed. Taylor Dolven can be reached at Follow her on Twitter Tweet embed. John R. Ellement can be reached at Follow him on Twitter Tweet embed. Anjali Huynh can be reached at Tweet embed.

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